Indigo Art Therapy Studio was honored as Small Business of the Year at the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville 2023 Arts Awards! The requirements for this award are that the organization must have fewer than 250 employees and defines itself as a small business; graciously gives support to arts and cultural programs and organizations despite it size; inspires a culture of giving to serve their community; sets the example to their employees as an advocate for arts and culture organizations; gives to various organizations within the arts and culture community; offers sustained support of organizations through financial vehicles, volunteer opportunities for staff, and builds long term relationships with arts and culture organizations.
Our practice owners, Devon Schlegel and Kelly DeSousa, gave acceptance speeches at the awards event to express their heartfelt gratitude:
Kelly: “As we’re celebrating this evening, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on support, hope, and gratitude. I want to thank my late husband, Ian DeSousa, who we lost last year to cancer, for believing in our mission and vision from the very start. We’re standing here now, on the other side of immeasurable loss, representing something bigger than ourselves or our own healing journeys. Through Indigo, we’ve had the privilege of witnessing healing though creativity. Even through the hardest and messiest times, if we can allow ourselves to sit imperfectly in stillness, and lean into breath and brush strokes, we can find, in those moments, hope, resilience, and joy. And so much gratitude. But we can’t heal without others. It’s true that it takes a village. I see faces from my family’s village here today. And many supporters and advocates for arts and healing. Thank you all. I want to say a very special thank you, to the moon and back, to my bright and brilliant partner and friend for life, Devon Schlegel. It’s because of Devon’s incredible strength, compassion, and leadership, that we’ve been able to continue this work over the past year. When I count my blessings, which I do frequently these days, this lady is at the top. Thank you to our incredible team of art therapists, Samantha Revell, Jeanette Bullock, and Jessica Matos. We truly have a dream team. Thank you. Love you.”
Devon: “In addition to acknowledging the incredible work of our employees, we also owe enormous thanks to our clients, who trust us with their journeys. This trust is a responsibility we don’t ever take lightly and a gift we don’t ever take for granted. Thanks as well to my husband, Kyle, who serves as Indigo’s unofficial handyman and my biggest cheerleader. And to Kelly. Our relationship, a beautifully weird blend of friendship, partnership, and Scorpio sisterhood, remains truly one of the most valuable things in my life; and our little art therapy studio, a representation of our passion for this field and this community. I’m grateful that our partnership is rooted in compassion, honesty, taking turns crying during our partner meetings, and telling each other to take days off. Thank you to the Cultural Council for recognizing the value of art therapy, for supporting our small business, and for honoring us with this award. I was drawn to this field because when I was a teen, art therapy spoke to me in a way that other interventions couldn’t. I experienced the healing power of art firsthand, and it’s a privilege that I get to witness the power of self expression every day, that I get to do it with Kelly and our team, and that we get to it here in the Jacksonville community. Thank you.”