It’s easy to think that designers live a charmed life. Creating gorgeous homes with elegant details, hobnobbing with fellow designers chatting about the latest trends, and planning where the next project might lead. Our friends at Barn Light Electric know some pretty amazing designers who recently turned their huge hearts to an unlikely target — Ghana, West Africa. While serving on the popular TV series Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, designers Veronica Valencia and Kim Lewis met some people from the nonprofit organization Art Feeds.

“They told us the story of children in Ghana who had been sold by their parents into slavery to the fishing industry on Lake Volta,” Kim explains. “The children are forced to fish every day in terrible conditions and many kids drown.”

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With help from the Touch a Life Foundation, who began rescuing these children, Art Feeds took their art therapy program to Ghana to help the children heal from their traumatic experiences. Kim and Veronica jumped at the chance to help with the project, and applied their tremendous talents in designing Connor’s Creative Art Center. Barn Light Electric was honored to donate several Ivanhoe™ Aero Shallow Bowl Porcelain Pendants to help light up the new space. The designers chose an array of finishes for the Aero pendants along with red-and-white chevron cords to bring lots of color to the room.

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The art center was built in honor of a boy named Connor Deal, a young American who, at the age of 12, was a budding singer and artist when he passed away. His family started Connor’s Song, a nonprofit organization to help inspire creativity in other kids both at home and abroad. The Deal family felt that this project was a fitting way to share Connor’s spirit and imagination with other children.

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“Connor loved building with Legos so we designed this art center to look like three Lego blocks stacked together,” Kim says. “On its own, a Lego is just a block, but together Legos create something solid and beautiful. These kids are stronger together. And our hope is that through art and creativity, these kids will find healing.”

Photos courtesy Veronica Valencia and Kim Lewis

Disclaimer: Barn Light Electric (USA) made this charitable contribution to the listed beneficiaries.



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