Merivale High School Unveils “Representation Matters” Mural

Merivale High School Unveils “Representation Matters” Mural
Posted on 12/11/2020
Merivale High School Unveils “Representation Matters” Mural

The halls of Merivale High School are home to a new mural that shares a powerful message of belonging and equity. In November, students in the Social Changemakers club, in partnership with Youth Ottawa and community artist Hasina Kamanzi, installed a mural entitled “Representation Matters.”


This collaborative artwork has been a year in the making. Last year, the Social Changemakers undertook a series of conversations to capture student voice, learn from one another, and deepen community connections. 


Students worked together with Hasina to transform the themes from these conversations into a mural design. This project was facilitated by Student Success Teacher Ms. Burrows and Jude Ashburn, Program Coordinator at Youth Ottawa.


The group’s goal was to create a design where all students could see themselves reflected, and to represent with pride the vibrant and diverse identities at Merivale. Students collaborated on the vision, content, and final artwork and selected a location that ensured the message was visible to all students at the school. 


"We (the Social Changemakers) wanted to make something to represent people who aren’t usually shown or talked about in the media. We covered topics such as 2SLGBTQ+, Asian representation, disability and mental health, Muslim students, Black Lives Matter, and more."⁣


This project was the latest initiative in the club’s partnership with Youth Ottawa. The Social Changemakers participated in the 2019 Youth Ottawa Action Showcase at City Hall, sharing their work with other students and community leaders. 


Since the club launched two years ago, students have helped build the OCDSB Culture of Caring and Social Responsibility by collaboratively exploring topics such as Indigenous Truth and Reconciliation, race and racism, power and privilege, mental health and wellness, and 2SLGBTQ+ issues. 


Well done, Social Changemakers!

The Representation Matters mural was installed in November 2020

The Representation Matters mural was installed in November 2020


Working on the mural in 2019
Working on the mural in 2019

Artist Hasina Kamanzi
Artist Hasina Kamanzi

Jude Ashburn, Program Coordinator, Youth Ottawa
Jude Ashburn, Program Coordinator, Youth Ottawa 


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