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A Message from Councilmember Jim Graham
I am pleased to announce that Words, Beats, and Life http://www.wblinc.org (a Ward One based youth development arts organization) has been awarded a Tag Removal and Community Beautification contract through the Children's Youth Investment Trust Corporation (CYITC). I had worked to secure this funding. The program will include employing youth committed to the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS) who have histories of property damage charges and demonstrate artistic abilities and the commitment to use those abilities in more positive ways as part of their rehabilitation. The intent of the program is to provide ways for youth to positively give back to the same communities where they have committed crimes by finding their artistic voice and building self-confidence and pride.
Words, Beats, and Life will team up with the very popular MuralsDC Project http://www.muralsdcproject.com which I originally funded and established at the Department of Public Works in 2007. DPW and Words, Beats, and Life will identify walls and spaces throughout the city that are repeatedly tagged with illegal graffiti, and in many instances, gang taggings. Words, Beats, and Life will then begin to work with the DYRS and respective communities to create a mural that is positive, reflective of the community, and the aspirations of particularly the youth in the community.
If you would like to recommend a wall in your neighborhood that is repeatedly tagged, please send them directly to me at jim[at]grahamwone[dot]com or call my office at 724.8181.
Best, Councilmember Jim Graham