On October 13, 2012, Stop Dreaming & Live (SD&L) volunteers walked the streets of North Oak Cliff to do away with the graffiti from local businesses, homes, and public areas. SD&L had a total of 15 volunteers that came out to help with the graffiti abatement. The SD&L volunteers range from different nationalities and included young children ranging in age from four to twelve years old.
The Isenberg Center for Immigration Empowerment (ICIE) staff enjoys having young children and young adults volunteer with the graffiti cleanup. This teaches them good citizenship and not to vandalize the Oak Cliff area and other areas with graffiti.
SD&L volunteers cleaned over 60 graffiti tags from over 10 blocks. Some of the graffiti marks were directed to the SD&L in reference to the work we do. Some of the hoodlums that paint graffiti took time out of their day to get special stickers made. The stickers created were of hands with their middle finger sticking out and were placed on SD&L previous paint cleaning. SD&L took this as a compliment as the volunteers painted over the stickers. This shows us the work we are doing is being noticed not only by the community but also by those vandalizing the Oak Cliff area.
SD&L will continue the fight against vandalism in the North Oak Cliff area until these individuals stop harming the local business and homes. Raul is a new SD&L volunteer and to his surprise really enjoyed the event. At the end of the cleanup, the volunteers felt good from performing community service. ICIE understands the SD&L community service events are a type of therapy.
The goal of ICIE is to expand the program to other neighborhoods and to have citizen families join foreign national families.