South Bay Hands on Art can trace its roots back to 1975, when budget cuts in the Palos Verdes Unified School District deeply affected the arts in the schools. A program known as Art at Your Fingertips was created by a group of parents who would continue the art experience for their school-age children. This program was so successful that by 1982 a new pilot program was started which, for the first time, broadened the reach of the program to include schools outside the PV USD.
One of these "sister" programs was South Bay Hands on Art, born in 1987, with only four elementary schools and thirty docents. In 1994, yet another sister program was born when Torrance formed their own group, Adventures in Art. This allowed Hands on Art to expand to the entire Redondo Beach Unified School District. The program continued to duplicate and there are now six sister groups in the area. (See our sidebar for links to some of them.)
Today, South Bay Hands on Art proudly boasts nineteen schools, both public and private, and over 350 docents. We bring six different art projects to students in elementary, middle, and high school classrooms, and afford the children the opportunity to experience the joy and magic of art in a non-judgmental, non-threatening environment.
Thanks to the efforts of parent volunteers, whose passion for art illuminates our children's world, Hands on Art provides a rich and stimulating opportunity to experience art in different and exciting ways.