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    Welcoming and inspiring new arrivals in Kismayo

    Day 88

    A Colorful Welcome

    “We have young artists who are mentors. We have artists who love teaching. They have the power to change the art scene in the city, to inspire more kids who are interested in art.”

    Zaila from the ARC team has seen firsthand how important expressing yourself through art can be to young people in Kismayo. And not only that, how skills in art can lead to jobs that propel kids forward on their careers. “They recently got a job marketing solar lamps,” he said. “they were hired to design ads throughout the city and surrounding areas.”

    On Day 82, we helped bring that love of art to more kids at the Youth Center. And today, we’re taking the idea a step further, inspiring the next generation of new arrivals.

    The artists and teachers from the Youth Center wanted to do something to welcome families to a new neighborhood of former refugees, returning home after decades away.

    Their idea? A welcoming mural, that could both serve to make these families feel more at home, and let them know that there’s a thriving art scene in their new city.

    “This public mural is a way to say ‘welcome’,” said Zaila, “and also a way to inspire other artists in the new settlement. Hopefully they’ll be motivated to come to the Youth Center too, and to learn how to use and grow their skills.”

    For young people in a new city, a new country, this simple gesture can mean so much. And it could also mean that a door has opened – to a future they never thought possible.

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    Changemakers 365

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    Changemakers 365 members give either $30 per month or a one-time gift of $365 (it’s free for anyone who has ever lived in a refugee camp). Join us!

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