New Mural in Miami’s Little Haiti Honors SOIL’s Work
At SOIL we are always humbled by the outpouring of generous and creative support we receive from SOIL cultivators and friends across the world who allow us to incubate sustainable sanitation solutions for Haiti’s most vulnerable communities. Some of our most creative support to date has come out of one high school in Miami – which has a club dedicated solely to advocating SOIL’s mission to transform waste into resources in Haiti!
At the end of this past school year, students from the SOIL at Miami Beach Senior High Club (SOIL@MBSH) collaborated with art students from a school in Miami’s Little Haiti neighborhood to paint a mural in one of the largest Haitian communities in the U.S.
The installation, which was intended to grow support for SOIL’s ecological sanitation work in Haiti and to promote environmental stewardship in Miami, was made possible by the generous support of individuals and groups throughout the community who shared both time and resources with the student group. Miami-Dade County School Board member Dr. Martin Karp generously granted the funds for the paint and a student’s parent made sure that the students were able to follow a long day of painting with a nourishing dinner of delectable Haitian cuisine.
Miami-based organization Unconventional facilitated the mindful collaboration between volunteers, club sponsors, student leaders, and local artist Luis Valle. Valle, a prominent visual artist and educator in Miami, came up with the design and sketched the mural’s skeleton on the wall, leaving it numbered for the students to paint.
Luis Valle shared the following statement about the mural, which students hope will shed light on SOIL’s work to meaningfully respond to Haiti’s sanitation crisis and advance ecological restoration:
“These are my magic men/Shamansito character(s). They are dignified benevolent beings who help tend the earth and do good. They are multicultural. In the original image they were making it rain to sprout out mushrooms. (For composition purposes we took (the) rain out. Here can be after, when the sun is out and shining. The middle thing is their magic staff. The sun’s rays are shining out to bless the world. So in a sense they are fertilizing and enriching the soil in the image.”
Until we are able to go visit the mural in person, we want to share photos that the students took, along with our heartfelt thanks for the time and dedication that went into creating such a beautiful visual representation of the work that SOIL does. Perhaps this will inspire us to step up our game on the walls at our offices in Haiti and paint some more murals here, too!
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