Vandy Massey updates us on her 1000 paintings project for charity.

The Running with Brushes goal of painting and selling 1000 paintings was starting to feel unachievable, but when we sent out our appeal last year, the SEAW artists who responded all helped me get it over the line. At final count, we had 1006 paintings donated by 61 artists.

Where does the money go?

All the money from the project goes to Care for Casualties, a British charity which assists servicemen and women from The Rifles Regiment who have been injured in Iraq or Afghanistan. It also helps their families. The charity was started by Karen Charman-Allen, mother of Rifleman Philip Allen, who was killed (aged 20) in November 2009 in Afghanistan.

Vandy and her sons

Why did I start this project?

My younger son is a Captain in the Rifles Regiment, which makes this a very personal project for me.  The months when my son was on operations in Iraq were some of the toughest of my life.  The safety of our soldiers requires their location and activities to be kept completely confidential. For the immediate family, this means spending months knowing that they are doing a dangerous job, but not knowing where they are or whether they are safe and unharmed.

The Rifles Regiment has suffered over 60 deaths and 300 injuries during the conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Care for Casualties appeal covers the costs of rehabilitation and counselling for those soldiers who have returned with life altering injuries.  Even though Britain has withdrawn from Afghanistan, many of these soldiers still need continued support.

We get by with little help from our friends

This project would not have been possible without all the artists who so generously donated paintings, the buyers who bought them, and my very supportive husband, Marc, who does all the admin, mounting, packaging and posting.

Marc mounting and packing paintings

So far, we have sold 437 paintings and contributed £7600 (including Gift Aid) to Care for Casualties.  We could raise the same amount again if we can sell the 569 remaining paintings.

Running with brushes paintings

Buy art this Christmas

If you know anyone who would like to see those 569 paintings, or if you need a couple of Christmas gifts that really express the spirit of the season, you can still see them all on the Running with Brushes website