As you know, Mayra Jackson, Latwian Jackson, and their young children Jordan, 9, and Nicholas, 4, lost their apartment on Judson and Dempster and all their belongings in a fire that gutted their home last Wednesday morning.
The family is overwhelmed by and so grateful for the outpouring of support from Evanston residents who have provided clothing, toys, food, and funds.
Mayra, who is an artist in stained glass, lost all her artwork and supplies in the fire.
Evanston resident Jill Miller, who was on her way to work that morning and pulled over to help the family when she saw flames bursting out of the Jackson's apartment, told me how she'd often driven past the apartment and noticed the beautiful artwork in the windows.
"I walked by there all the time and there are all these art pieces in the window," she told me. "And I always look because I love her art, I didn't even know who she was until today."
Mayra, who has never sold her work, told me she placed it in the windows to brighten up the family's home. Her work includes influences from her Puerto Rican heritage and symbols to support Autism work (Jordan has autism).
"I'm Puerto Rican and I grew up in Puerto Rican neighborhoods--Humboldt Park, Bucktown, then Garfield Park and Austin," she told me. "Then we transitioned here. I wanted to, in my art, to put some of my culture in there. I wanted to feel good about moving over here, and I wanted to do some art on this window, so it won't look so plain. So that's what I ended up doing."
If you'd like to help Mayra replenish her art supplies and tools, please consider purchasing a gift certificate from local art store Blick.
You'll be supporting a local family in need ... and a local business as well!
Purchase a gift certificate here, and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. (NOTE: no ‘E’).