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Mayor signs proclamation, world-renowned artist visits West Plains

Thursday morning Mayor Mike Topliff signed a proclamation recognizing October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Last year, Missouri ranked second in the United States for incidents of domestic violence. The proclamation was presented to Christos House Executive Director Moira Seiber.

Christos House hosted public event Wednesday to help shed light on this serious issue that affects women and men in the Ozarks. World-renowned African artist Bolaji Ogunwo painted a mural inside the Christos House resale shop during the event. The title of the mural is, “Helping Hands.”

Ogunwo has more than fifty international art exhibitions to his credit. He currently is a studio artist and painting lecturer at the Department of Creative Arts, University of Lagos, Akoka.

Ogunwo came West Plains to visit friends, Crockett and Tonya Oaks, who met the artist when they lived in Africa. He was a featured artist for a program the Oaks started in Lagos called, “Art Anyone,” designed to bring area artists together with expatriates to exhibit and sell their art.  Crockett Oaks said the couple “fell in love with his work.”

Crockett Oaks is Director of Business and Support Services at MSU-West Plains, and currently serves on the Christos House board of directors.

Christos House provides emergency shelter and outreach services for victims of domestic and sexual violence in Carter, Douglas, Howell, Oregon, Ozark, Shannon, Texas, and Wright counties.

Christos House also helps victims with rent, utilities, and clothing and offers a diaper program and parenting classes free to the community.

The West Plains Resale store is located at 125 Jefferson Avenue in West Plains (the former Daily Quill building).

Shopping hours are 10 am to 5 pm Monday-Friday and from 10 am to 2 pm on the first and third Saturdays of each month. Items for sale include clothing, shoes, furniture, toys, books and household items.

Persons needing help can call the Christos House hotline, 1-800-611-5853.

For information, or to donate money or items for the resale shop, call Christos House at 417-256-3408 visit, or visit the store.

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