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Graffiti-Inspired Street Art Helps Bring Awareness To Social Issues In South Dakota

Credit Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Black Hills
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Black Hills in Rapid City.

A non-profit mural-painting organization in Rapid City is getting grant money from the Frontier Fund for four graffiti-inspired projects. About This Life, Inc. is using street art to help bring awareness to social issues in communities across South Dakota.

About This Life, Inc. is a non-profit mural painting organization that uses street art – specifically spray painting – to help bring awareness to community-specific issues.

Co-founder Sara Levy says About This Life, Inc. has painted murals near the Boston Marathon route to promote healing, for the South Dakota National Guard during suicide-awareness week, and at the Douglas Middle School near Ellsworth Air Force Base to promote anti-bullying and cultural tolerance.

Levy says many past projects have been self-funded or paid for by donations so an award from the Frontier Fund is welcome news.

“Yes, very good news. It kind of let us know that we are on the right path,” says Levy.

When writing the grant, Levy says she focused on getting funding to paint murals at places that have treatment facilities or after school programming for at-risk youth.

She reached out to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Black Hills.

Executive Director Nicole Burdick says her organization is a good fit.

She says the mural may go in the front office at the Rapid City location.

Young people in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program will have a say in what the mural ultimately depicts. Burdick says she believes their message will likely be one that transcends beyond South Dakota.

“Hope. Hope is the word that always comes to my mind because every kid that comes into our program has a unique situation. I think that universal word is hope. And chance. Just give me one chance. That’s all I need is one chance and someone to believe in me. And fun. They like to have a lot of fun, yeah, they do,” says Burdick.

About This Life, Inc’s Sara Levy says funding is still available.

Interested organizations and communities are encouraged to apply.

You can find out more information on About This Life, Inc. on Facebook.

Link to the Frontier Fund at:


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