Update time! As you know, we were awarded Project Art Aid’s Queen City Soup art grant a few months ago for our Clean Graffiti project (YAY!). You can read more here but the basics of the project are that we are putting down positive, inspiring messages in lower income neighborhoods around Charlotte in both English & Spanish. Our goal is for the community to see how something as simple as cleaning can change someone’s perspective.
In all honesty this project was simply an idea at first. It was that project we’ve always wanted to do but couldn’t afford to do on our own. We had no idea that we would actually win and get to do our community art project. So after winning the grant we decided that it would be best to find a partner in the community that could help streamline our project. We wanted to find a way to make the biggest impact on these lower income neighborhoods and align ourselves with an existing mission. Enter West Charlotte High School and Project L.I.F.T!
Project L.I.F.T (Leadership & Investment For Transformation) is a non-profit organization right here in Charlotte. They are seeking to transform the way students, who traditionally perform poorly in school, are educated in reading and math and culture using a unique approach to teaching and learning. Their work directly impacts nine schools in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School System:
- Allenbrook Elementary
- Ashley Park PreK-8 School
- Bruns Academy
- Druid Hills Academy
- Ranson IB Middle School
- Statesville Road Elementary
- Thomasboro Academy
- Walter G. Byers School
- West Charlotte High School
We’ve teamed up with the Art Director at West Charlotte High School, Beverly Smith, to incorporate her advanced art students in our QC Soup project. They will learn about sustainable media and what Clean Graffiti is all about. During several class talks, we will work with the students on the design process and guide them through the actual messaging that will speak to them. Students will also help select exact locations around the campus that could have the most impact. Through this project, these art students will put together presentations and present the final design ideas to the #thesavageway team. Then we will choose a winner and get the design into production. The execution of our QC Soup project will take place primarily around West Charlotte HS with a few locations in the community where students walk everyday. In addition, each Project L.I.F.T. School will also get a Clean Graffiti spot to tie the entire project together.
We know that by partnering with a community member like Project L.I.F.T. we will have a more direct connection to these neighborhoods as well as creating a conversation with our project. When we embarked on this journey, we had no idea that we would be able to work with these West Charlotte students and have a chance to help boost their morale to and from school. It has been such a pleasant surprise. We are BEYOND excited at our direction! We will be sure to give continuous updates as things unfold! Stay tuned!