In 1998, a jazz musician named Doug took me to the Children's Crisis Treatment Center of Philadelphia. Doug went there every month to play music for the kids. When I visited, he played and I did a cartooning lesson with them. The kids at CcTC have been through really serious trauma. But what amazes me about those kids is that their primary inclination, their instinct, is to run and play and smile. In spite of all of their trouble, all they wanted to do was be happy. That made me realize that people are fundamentally good. And it's only when we grow older and hard times come our way that we get jaded, angry, depressed, and disappointed.
That one visit to CcTC made me reevaluate my life. If these kids were smiling in spite of all the bad that life has thrown at them, then what right do I have to complain? I kept going to CcTC over the years. My first comic, "Petey" was a tribute to the kids at CcTC. I was even asked to sit on the initial Executive Committee of the "Friends of CcTC". I'm not typing this to brag. I just want to shed some light on an amazing organization that helps the neediest of Philly's kids. CcTC is truly a place of healing. The people who work there are no less that miracle workers in my opinion. Please click here to visit their web site and learn more. I will be posting other CcTC related work over the next few months.