Grant #380


January 6, 2020

When You Feel Like A Misfit, Create Inclusive Spaces Where Misfits Are A Perfect Fit

Maybe you’ve heard of Cindy Wonderful, kinda famous in certain circles. After a colorful career as one half of a queer punk rock duo, Cindy surprised the city of Baton Rouge by rehabbing a $1000 house and opening it to the public as Chez Fab Arts and Community Project. The surprise was that concerts, movie screenings, workshops, video shoots, and other exciting arts activities attracted people to a neighborhood that was, shall we say, not exactly known for the arts. It became a gathering place where people of every description felt welcome. That’s important to Cindy, who remembers the times she felt like a misfit.

Now she’s expanding the concept of welcoming space with WONDERGROUND, a concrete box Cindy and friends are converting into a totally sustainable art / music / community home. They’ve got solar panels, as well as a biogas toilet they expect to produce compost and gas to power the hot water heater and kitchen stove. They’ve got a rain catchment and filtration system. They’ve also got a big leak in the roof and the interior needs a serious pressure-washing, which is where this Awesome Without Borders grant comes in.

We’ll help get the building in good enough shape to install all that sustainability equipment, paint a mural on the wall, and start making the magic happen. Correction: make MORE magic happen. Cindy seems to be doing a pretty Wonderful kind of magic already, don’t you think?

Category: Activism, Art, Community



After 11+ years, we’re signing off and closing applications for good. We’ve supported 571 projects with $571,000 in grant dollars. We’re so proud to have celebrated such incredible work. Please visit for more information on other AWESOME chapters! And thanks for sharing so much awesomeness with us.

Team Awesome Without Borders