The Mezzanine Gallery to Exhibit “The Pandemic Paintings” by Theresa Walton

On view from June 12 – July 24, 2020
Visit the Gallery in-person or view it online

Wilmington, Del. (June 10, 2020) – The Pandemic Paintings, an exhibition of watercolor portraits of health care workers and scenes that represent hope to them by Theresa (Terre) Walton, will be on view in the Mezzanine Gallery from June 12-July 24, 2020. For those unable to visit in-person, an online gallery will be available on our main website on June 12. Walton, a retired art educator with over 25 years of experience, paints in both watercolors and acrylics and has exhibited in various venues in the Newark and Wilmington area.

The Pandemic Paintings started with Walton’s commitment to paint every day during the quarantine, and a spontaneous watercolor painted from a photo of her son’s fiancé in a mask before work. After posting the watercolor on Facebook, Walton received an avalanche of requests from family and friends to paint their loved ones working in health care. For over a week she painted up to four portraits a day to keep up with the demand. The result is a collection of over 35 portraits of people “connected to her by five degrees of separation.”

Self-portrait, 2020, watercolor, 5″ x 7″

Moving on from the portraits, hope became the theme of the next phase of the quarantine watercolors. Walton requested from that same sphere of friends to send her a photo of something “that represents hope or a photo of what you hope to do when this whole thing is over.” Walton received many images of nature (walks, wildlife, and gardens) and water.

Most recently she is painting a series of loose, spontaneous images of her own choosing. Walton said, “I am still getting portrait requests and still fulfilling those requests, but primarily have moved on to the loose, relaxed work of the final phase, and hope.”

Images from Health Workers/ Five Degrees of Separation, 2020, watercolor, all images 5″ x 7″

The Mezzanine Gallery is open to the public weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and is located in the Carvel State Office Building, 820 N. French Street, Wilmington. Visitors must wear face coverings and maintain 6 feet distance from other individuals not in their household.


Contact: Leeann Wallett, Program Officer, Communications and Marketing

The Delaware Division of the Arts, a branch of the Delaware Department of State, is dedicated to cultivating and supporting the arts to enhance the quality of life for all Delawareans. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit or call 302-577-8278.

Governor Carney Announces Loan Program for Federal Workers

Program would provide state-guaranteed, low-interest loans for workers going unpaid during shutdown

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney on Thursday announced a state-guaranteed, low-interest loan program to assist federal workers who are going unpaid during the federal government shutdown.

Loans funded through the program announced Thursday would be made by a financial institution and with a loan guarantee from the Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA). Workers and their families could use loan proceeds to keep up with their mortgages, pay utility bills, and other housing-related expenses during the shutdown. In partnership with the State of Delaware, West End Neighborhood House will assist workers in completing applications, and will offer optional financial coaching services.

About 500 federal employees who live in Delaware continue to go unpaid.

“Federal workers in Delaware and across the country are going without pay during this shutdown through no fault of their own,” said Governor Carney. “These workers have families who rely on their paychecks to pay their mortgages and other important bills. We ought to do what we can to help our neighbors as this shutdown continues.”

“This loan assistance will be a lifeline to federal workers, helping them make ends meet and supporting their day-to-day life while they continue to work without pay,” said House Majority Leader Valerie Longhurst. “This government shutdown has been egregious, and this is a small but important step to helping them meet their obligations and one less thing to worry about during this difficult time. I thank Governor Carney for persisting and finding a solution when things looked bleak.”

“This shutdown and the damage it is causing in Delaware justifies swift state action, ” said Senate Majority Whip Bryan Townsend. “I’m thankful that Governor Carney has acted with the urgency that this problem so clearly demands, I appreciate Representative Longhurst’s leadership on legislative efforts, and I sincerely hope that we can find a way to reopen the federal government as soon as possible.”

Under the new program, DSHA will guarantee the loans from revenue generated through the agency’s Homeownership Loan Program (HLP). Federal workers may access the loans with no credit check required, and will be eligible to receive up to one-month’s net pay.

“In the past, DSHA has guaranteed similar short term housing assistance loans provided by West End Neighborhood House, and we are glad to use the resources established through our existing partnerships to respond quickly to this unique need,” said Anas Ben Addi, Director of the Delaware State Housing Authority.

The loans will offer flexible payment terms and optional financial counseling through the $tand by Me program. Loan managers also will help applicants determine eligibility, complete the necessary paperwork, and the amount of the available loan. M&T Bank, in partnership with West End Neighborhood House, has agreed to make loans available statewide under the program.

“West End is once again pleased to participate in a public private partnership that allows Delawareans financial security,” said Paul Calistro, Executive Director of West End Neighborhood House.

“The West End Neighborhood House does great work helping Delawareans achieve self-sufficiency through economic independence,” said Nick Lambrow, President of M&T Bank’s Delaware Region. “We have supported West End for nearly a century, and are glad to support their efforts to expand the existing Loans Plus program and provide short-term, low interest loans to those impacted by the partial government shutdown.”



View more resources for furloughed federal workers.

Governor Carney, Legislators Announce Bill to Assist Federal Workers

Loan program would protect federal workers and their families during government shutdown

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney and members of the Delaware General Assembly announced legislation on Tuesday to help federal workers who live in Delaware and are affected by the ongoing shutdown of the federal government.

House Bill 3, sponsored by House Majority Leader Valerie Longhurst, would provide state-guaranteed, low-interest loans to federal workers to help cover mortgage payments, medical bills, food costs, and other bills facing federal workers who are going without pay during the shutdown. Under the program, M&T Bank, in partnership with the West End Neighborhood House, has agreed to provide short-term loans available in all three counties.

“For federal workers, including many of our neighbors here in Delaware, bills don’t just stop coming because the federal government is shut down,” said Governor Carney. “These workers still have to take their families to the doctor, get groceries, pay the electric bill, and the mortgage. We ought to do what we can to help these workers and their families.”

“Through no fault of their own, hundreds of Delaware families are facing the prospect of trying to pay their bills without a paycheck coming in, even though many of them are still being forced to show up for work. That’s unconscionable,” said House Majority Leader Valerie Longhurst, the lead sponsor of HB 3. “While we can’t do anything to end this manufactured shutdown, we can do something on a state level to help federal workers in Delaware get financial support so their everyday obligations do not turn into burdens and force drastic decisions.”

The State of Delaware estimates that roughly 500 federal workers live in Delaware and are not being paid as the shutdown continues.

M&T Bank would provide federal employees with short-term loans with no credit check required. West End Neighborhood House and the $tand By Me program would assist federal employees in completing loan applications and provide financial literacy coaching to help their families endure the effects of the shutdown.

“M&T understands the impact of the partial government shutdown on workers and their families in Delaware and we are glad to partner with West End and the State of Delaware to provide short-term, low interest loans to those impacted,” said Nick Lambrow, President of M&T Bank’s Delaware Region.

“We are impressed at how quickly our partners have developed a plan to help federal workers weather the government shutdown. For 136 years, West End has assisted families navigating unforeseen circumstances and is proud to partner with M&T Bank and the State of Delaware on such a creative and timely solution,” said Paul Calistro, Executive Director of West End Neighborhood House.

Last week, the Delaware Department of Labor announced that it had extended unemployment insurance protections to federal employees affected by the shutdown. The Department of Labor began accepting applications for unemployment benefits from federal employees on Friday.

“Since January 4, we’ve received about 80 applications for unemployment from federal employees that work at agencies such as the Department of Agriculture, Department of Interior, Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Treasury as well as the IRS,” said Cerron Cade, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Labor. “Because unemployment by definition and state law means that a person is not working through no fault of their own, those who are essential federal employees and still working wouldn’t qualify. They need money for gas and everyday bills. We applaud the legislators with their quick turnaround to pass a bill to help these and other federal workers.”