The Mural Arts Program in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, began as a graffiti-removal initiative with a mural-painting component designed to engage adjudicated graffiti writers in learning more positive and productive ways to express their creativity. Since its inception, over 3,000 murals have been created and seen by thousands of tourists.
Mural Arts on the Today Show
While Mural Arts’ focus has grown substantially over the years, one fundamental objective still applies: to use mural-making and art education as a means of combating and preventing crime.
Through its Restorative Justice programming, Mural Arts offers a constructive, creative outlet for Philadelphia’s chronically truant/delinquent youth with a profound need for positive role models, structured activities, and opportunities to develop job skills.
The program works with adjudicated youth at several sites around Philadelphia, including the local detention center, a correctional center for young adults, a residential program for boys, and a local affiliate of the nationally known VisionQuest program. It also provides programming for adjudicated youth in supervised independent-living homes around the city.