A Voice for the Voiceless

Voice for the Voiceless from Illinois Collaboration on Youth on Vimeo.

In Spring of 2016, The Beverly Area Arts Alliance partnered with the Illinois Collaboration on Youth (ICOY) to create “A Voice For The Voiceless,” a large tapestry of more than 4,000 pieces of fabric and ribbon, created as a community art project to express our growing concern on behalf of at-risk youth and families harmed by the Illinois budget impasse. It was made with the help of several Beverly/Morgan Park businesses, including: The Quilter’s Trunk, Everything’s Relative, Kunsthaus and BAPA, as well as students, local Girl Scout Troop 20076, community members and homeless/at-risk youth from a drop-in shelter. Each piece of the tapestry represents 10 of the 40,000 served by programs in the ICOY network that are impacted by the lack of a state budget. These programs provide critical services; including shelters, crisis intervention, mental health services, alternatives to youth incarceration and more. As each day passes without a budget, more and more lives are affected by violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation.

On March 2nd 2016, Alliance artists brought the tapestry, along with several paintings by local artists, to the rotunda of the State Capitol in Springfield to express our concerns directly to Illinois legislators. Shortly thereafter, a bill made it through the Illinois House of Representatives – the first one in many months to include funding for social services. ICOY and many other organizations continue to press Governor Rauner and the Illinois legislature to pass a bill to reinstate funding for these crucial services. For more information, visit the Illinois Collaboration on Youth website. Call your local senator and state representative and ask them to work toward the passage of a budget, and reach out to those in need. #ILBudgetNow #OurStateOurResponsibility #VoiceForTheVoiceless


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