“A Brighter Way” Story

Hi, my name is Cristina Powell. When I was four days old, I was adopted from Lima, Peru. At fifteen months, I was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and a movement disorder…not expected to walk or talk.

Thankfully, I do both!

Please don’t tell yourself, “I can’t!” I just know there has to be a better way for you. All you need to do is trust yourself and believe in yourself. You may not know it, but it’s leading you to…a brighter way.

I needed to learn in a special way because I didn’t fit the other way of learning, so… I needed to find my own… brighter way. Mom and I got creative and believed in ourselves…and opened my own school. This allowed me to be myself… to learn my way… and grow into a better person. My talents became more alive through home schooling.

At Paramount Charter in Kalamazoo, MI, Angela Newton, my art teacher discovered my talent and made it come alive - and my journey began as I created many paintings! With the help of artist Melody Allan, I had my first art exhibit at the Portage Public Library. When I’m in Michigan, I still enjoy learning from Melody and venturing into different techniques with my art. In Boston, I continue to do this work with Elizabeth Rocha. These teachers planted seeds in me, and with a little TLC, my artwork blossomed into a garden of color. Now, A Brighter Way Inc is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity that allows me to share my artwork with the world!

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Just to let you know…this is my painting, called “A Brighter Way.” When I painted this in my art class, it took Mrs. Newton by surprise…and me, too! She said, “You have talent!” Can you believe…I now have over 100 paintings? I can’t!!!

I compare my life to a flower…blossoming and blooming…bright and cheerful…with lots of color, like my painting…“A Brighter Way.” My mom and I like to say…our lives are like a garden…always changing and challenging, but full of color, love and happiness.

When you read this story, I hope you can see and feel my…a brighter way.

Don’t forget: We are all unique, but we are the same. I walk slower and I may talk slower, but I am really just like you.

 Love and Smiles,

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