Friday, September 11, 2009

Only Four Workshops Left for 2009-10!

The first eleven workshops have been great. CB Grant staff has met many community members who have shared their wonderful ideas in beautifying their respective neighborhoods. Now, we are down to the last of the workshops for the 2009-10 CB Grant cycle. There are only 4 workshops remaining:
Remember that when you attend you are encouraged to share information about your project or organization. Also, bring a sweater -- sometimes, the air conditioning is turned to 11!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

America the Beautiful Mural Enriches Special Education

"American Spirit Arena" project funded by CB Grant and completed by Leichman Development & Beautification Committee
Excerpts from the Leichman's press release:
Nearly 100 special education students have helped muralist Elizabeth Criss create the "American Spirit Arena" at Leichman High School, 19034 Gault Street, Reseda, CA. With support from a Los Angeles Community Beautification Grant, the walls of the school's main courtyard have been filled with colorful details of our country's treasures and traditions. The goal is to help students understand the inspiring concepts contained in patriotic songs.

The project started a year ago when Principal Pauline Furman explained to artist Criss that even though the school recites the Pledge of Allegiance and broadcasts songs with patriotic themes, the meanings remained elusive to her students. The decision was made to enhance a drab courtyard with imagery chosen to convey a sense of country.

Today, the students can see Smokey Bear extinguishing a campfire beneath Half Dome in Yosemite. Opposite that, they can view the dome of the Capitol Building in Washington, DC. Now, when students exit their cafeteria, they walk past Benjamin Franklin and Rosie the Riveter tending "The Supreme Food Court", filled with a cornucopia of New World Crops. As students come and go, they pass "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" which relays a short history of transportation, from the Mayflower to the Space Shuttle. When students return to school this week, they will better understand the phrases "sea to shining sea," "amber waves of grain," purple mountains majesty," and more through the freshly painted "America the Beautiful".
About Leichman High School: An LAUSD facility, Leichman High School provides instruction to 215 students with moderate to severe disabilities from all over the San Fernando Valley. Ranging in age from 13 to 22, their curriculum focuses on developing communication, vocational, and independent life skills.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

"City Offers Grants to Beautify Neighborhoods"

CB Grant awarded Melrose Parent Group a grant for their project, "Reach toward the Stars, Motivational Mural at Melrose Elementary"
The CB Grant Program and the mural depicted above was highlighted yesterday in an article (page 6), "City Offers Grants to Beautify Neighborhoods" by Amy Lyons of the Beverly Press, a local newspaper serving West Hollywood, Hancock Park and Wilshire communities.
Mentioned in the article are some of the organization members and the projects that was funded in the area: Jim Etue, a mural at Melrose Elementary School; Theresa Dahl, a vegetable garden at Carthay Center Elementary School; a median beautification along Fairfax Avenue; and Krista Michaels, a tree planting along the Cahuenga Pass.
Theresa Dahl, Friends of Carthay Center, described the CB Grant program nicely when she said, “I feel that communities are divorced from their neighborhood schools, and one way to reinvigorate that support is with these grants. They serve as great connectors. The grant really empowers people in their community because you have to get pledges of volunteer hours from all different kinds of people. You have doctors working alongside janitors on these makes people realize they can make a huge difference in their community.”
To read the whole article, click here. For more information about the CB Grant, click here.