Essentially Key Biscayne: Cristina Figueredo Zizold
Cristina Zizold supervises the creation of Valentine's Day cards at the Holtz Children's Hospital
“They’re stuck there,” says Zizold. “And the art is therapeutic. It helps these kids to think about something else for a little while.”
Zizold is a graduate of Key Biscayne Elementary School who later went on to Florida State University. She briefly considered a pre-med major but eventually opted to enroll in the school’s overseas art history program, which allowed her to study in Spain, England and Italy. She earned a master’s degree in Art History from University of Miami before working at MOCA in North Miami.
She decided to set up Art Heart after having her first child, Victoria, who is now age 2. Working through the Key Biscayne Community Foundation for non-profit status, she immediately got the attention of corporate donors, such as Whole Foods. Most recently, the organization received its first grant for $950 from the Rotary Club.
“It’s so intense,” she says. “Some of these kids can’t get out of bed. I just want to make them feel happy and if I can, then I feel great.”