Our Successes Meet Pendar

Pendar's story of life-changing artistic and personal transformation is a great example of how a little recognition can go a long way. Our team of DSP's working with Pendar found a creative way to shift perspective and help him frame his art, which was only the beginning of Pendar's remarkable progress.

An Artist Finds His Voice And Redesigns His Life

Pendar’s story of life-changing artistic and personal transformation

Starting Fresh with a New Canvas: An Artist's Vision is Recognized

When we first met Pendar in 2019, he was in the midst of a life-changing artistic transformation: Pendar has literally been drawing since he could first pick up a crayon, but his talent has only recently been recognized. There is a spirit in Pendar that has always needed to be expressed through drawing, using any canvas he could find and filling every available space with his art. Pendar’s drawings could be found all over the house, on just about every surface possible, even in places where it didn’t belong and couldn’t be appreciated (like furniture). Despite Pendar’s persistent efforts to draw everywhere he possibly could, his talent went unrecognized and unappreciated.

It became clear that Pendar needed to find the right medium to channel his artistic vision. His extended circle of CSI family and friends put their heads together and came up with the perfect solution. They redesigned his room incorporating large sections of blackboard on the walls to give Pendar a special place to focus his abilities.

Dreaming of Color: A New Sense of What’s Possible

Showcasing Pendar’s art this way turned out to be a great strategy for encouraging him to develop his talent. Now his drawings can be displayed for as long he chooses to leave them up on the walls. He makes use of the blackboards for his creations as the spirit moves him, and his favorites are captured in photographs.

Talent needs to be recognized and nourished to help realize one's potential. For an artist like Pendar, this may mean discovering a new medium, channeling his efforts, and allowing him to develop new skills as he explores what’s possible. Pendar’s unique style has been given the chance to grow and evolve, and with this new direction he is finding his artistic voice at last.

“I was amazed when I saw the detail of his work! Pendar has found a calmness in his artwork that helps him relate to people."
~ Janet Butler, President/CEOCommunity Systems, Inc.

Pendar’s artistic transformation, like his artwork, is full of meaning that you may not notice on first glance. When an artist finds the right medium, a new world of possibility becomes accessible. It’s exciting to see the drawings Pendar creates now as he is discovering his voice, developing his technique, and finding new ways to express his vision. As he continues to explore his talent, Pendar’s sense of what’s possible grows into a style uniquely his own.

"Take a look: each of his drawings starts with his name, you can see it in this full drawing and in this beginning" ~ Jina Kang, Program Director CSI VA

The full view of Pendar's chalk drawing, featuring intricate patterns full of meaning and mystery.

Happiness happened for Pendar when he was given the chance to showcase his work. At the beginning of an artistic journey with new opportunities to draw on his talent and hone his skills, Pendar’s dreams are just beginning to take shape.

We are extremely proud of the progress Pendar has made, and we believe he will use his talent to draw a happy future. We celebrate Pendar’s new approach to his art and are excited to see what he will create in the future.

We followed back up at the beginning of 2021 to interview Pendar and his Direct Care Provider and.... we discovered the latest canvas Pendar had been working on was HIMSELF!

Transition and Transformation

Throughout this series, we’ve shared some of the successes our CSI stars have had during the pandemic. For Pendar, the success he’s experienced is life-changing and inspiring! There’s no doubt that the pandemic abruptly changed everyone’s daily routines; however, that disruption turned out to be a great opportunity for Pendar to adopt new, healthier habits that have dramatically improved all aspects of his life.

A Change in Scenery

During the pandemic, many CSI staff members temporarily moved in with the persons they support in order to provide uninterrupted support and minimize exposure to COVID-19. Pendar and his two housemates were joined by a CSI staff member who helped the young men make adjustments to their routines. Pendar was already used to daily walks through their neighborhood, but in order to maintain safe social distancing, they instead went on hikes around a nearby lake. Not only did the trails offer a beautiful natural environment, but the hikes were also a bit more challenging than flat pavement. Pendar enjoyed the scenic hikes and had much more fun on these excursions with staff. He even began looking forward to walks around the lake!

CSI-VA_Pendar outside

Healthy Changes

The guys also decided to take advantage of the time at home to make some healthy changes in the kitchen. With encouragement from his new CSI staff housemate, Pendar became more involved in planning healthy menu options and cooking meals. As a result, Pendar has dropped 70 pounds, enhanced the quality of his sleep, and substantially improved his mood. Now that he has experienced significant weight loss, Pendar is working on building his muscle tone. He and his housemates have set up a home gym area in their basement where Pendar lifts weights to build his strength.

A Fresh New Canvas is Dreaming of Color

One thing that hasn’t changed about Pendar is his artistic expression; he continues to explore his artistic voice by creating intricate designs on his chalkboards. In much the same way that he achieved artistic transformation by having his talents recognized and nourished; so has Pendar achieved his physical transformation by nourishing his body and exercising his potential.

From finding a fresh canvas and a new sense of what’s possible to building healthy habits and recreating himself, we are once again amazed by Pendar’s progress and proud to share his successes!

"Happiness is the highest form of health."~ Dalai Lama

The Art of Joyful Giving

We hope you take joy in knowing your support colors the world, and your kindness is a masterpiece of beautiful collaboration. The value of your support is beyond measure, and it makes the world a more beautiful place.

Be the Pebble in the Pond

We hope you're inspired by how Pendar made healthy choices to recreate himself because of the generous support of people like you, our extended CSI family. Consider making a donation today to help support CSI's mission to continue to make dreams come true.

You have the power to create happiness through your kind support.