This week, we talk about what you need to start a non-profit organization. We had the pleasure of speaking with Isabell Bogosian, who started with her daughter, The Sasha Project LA. As an infant, Sasha was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and she uses her artistic skills to paint on denim for anyone. Sasha’s denim has been noticed by big players in business and in Hollywood. Her work has been seen on A-list celebrities, such as Rachel Zoe, Kristin Bell, and Katy Perry. They have big plans for the Sasha Project LA and we are so excited for you to tune-in this week and hear their remarkable story.
Our story begins 10 years ago, when my husband Peter and I celebrated the birth of our daughter Sasha. Due to complications at birth, Sasha suffered a stroke, and was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy.
To help manage and improve her condition, Sasha receives medical care and a variety of treatments at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles and also engages in strength building activities like physical and occupational therapy, rock climbing, horseback riding, swimming and tap dancing.
Sasha also participates in art therapy at CHLA. She’s very artistic and creative, so this is her favorite kind of therapy. Knowing this, I’m always looking for activities that not only allow her to express herself artistically but also ones that are highly therapeutic.
One day, I thought of giving Sasha a different type of canvas to paint on, a pair of my jeans. I’ve had a long career with Levi’s so my inventory of denim was quite good. She LOVED the idea of painting something you don’t traditionally paint and couldn’t wait to customize a pair of my Levi’s with her technique.
I was so thrilled to find an activity that not only she was passionate about, but also one that required her to use both sides of her body to create her designs. This is a huge victory for a parent who’s desperately looking for ways to get her daughter with a one sided weakness to engage her challenged side.
When I proudly started to wear my painted jeans, people loved them and asked where they could get a pair. When I shared this with Sasha, she was so excited and immediately wanted me to start collecting everyone’s denim items for her to paint. And that’s when an idea sparked in our minds. We both agreed that this could be a wonderful opportunity to raise money for the patients at CHLA, while at the same time continue keeping Sasha engaged in a therapeutic activity that she truly enjoyed.