My 7th and 8th grade kids from da Bronx painted a mural about mental health called “Through The Storm”. It is a topic very relevant and close us all that needs to be de-stigmatized, understood and discussed, especially in schools and especially here in the US.
We began by discussing mental health problems and their affects: depression, anxiety, fear, violence, racism, sexism, addiction, etc. Then we talked about ways to overcome these obstacles. Not being afraid to ask for help and not being afraid to reach out to others for support, among many other things.
We learned how to read the signs of someone who is suffering and to offer an ear, a shoulder and a hand to lead them through the storm so that they can heal and help others like themselves who are fighting battles of their own.
As you can imagine, there was lots of emotion and intense conversation to be had, but lots of fun too; music and dancing, drawing and painting. In the end we created something very beautiful and meaningful and everyone is proud of what we accomplished together.
I live for this.
Students of I.S 117X seeing the finished mural
Student artist statements about our mural, its meaning and significance.
NYC graffiti legend “Espo” speaks words of inspiration at the ceremony to future (and current) artists.