Today’s guest blogger is Bettina Hahn-Lawson. Bettina served on the P.S. 130 team last year and will be serving on the Civic Engagement Team this year.
On Friday, July 12th the City Year New York Civic Engagement Team hosted their first service day of the 2013-2014 corps year. More than 100 American Express employees joined us at the P.S. 149, Sojourner Truth Middle School in West Harlem. This school is known for its rich culture and commitment to the arts, so we set out to make sure the school’s physical environment reflected those values.
After warming up with a quick opening program and some powerful Physical Training (PT), American Express was ready to transform the school and get to work! One team began outside where they painted Ndebele designs, a South African painting technique, on the concrete wall surrounding the school. This project will be included in Harlem’s Art Walking Tour, a tour that allows visitors to view Harlem’s beauty by showcasing some of its best murals and community projects. Not only did the American Express volunteers finish these designs, but they went ahead and took on some extra projects—including painting a number of college themed murals!
Inside, two very large murals were painted on both walls of the gym, to help brighten the space and energize students. American Express diligently finished and handled the projects with care on both walls. Teachers and parents from the school community poked their heads into the gym throughout the day and were astonished by what they saw—many shared that their students will feel ecstatic when they return to school after summer break.
We would like to thank the P.S. 149 staff for welcoming us into their community and to all the America Express employees who served with us. To see more pictures from the day please click here.