Dawn blessing - Waikato District Council

Students help wipe out graffiti“Stopping the graffiti mademe feel more powerful andlike I can do something goodfor the community.Aliexa“Local Ngaruawahia students are keen to help clean up our graffiti problem.Taggers, bombing, graffiti, whatever we call it,when it’s illegally applied to our walls, fencesand businesses it’s seen as vandalism not art.Recently appointed Waikato DistrictCouncil Graffiti Co-ordinator Lianne VanDen Bemd has wasted no time getting towork on cleaning up the problem whileeducating young people at the same time.Armed with paint donated by Council,Lianne and local school students havecleaned up the graffiti at the NgaruawahiaRSA and the Arts Centre.“It was awesome, it really was,”said Lianne.“The students were focused the wholetime and really enjoyed thepractical interaction.”And it doesn’t stop here. Lianne is keento hear from local schools who would liketo register for the range of anti-taggingprogrammes available for schools.“We’re working on three differentprogrammes for various age groups thatinvolve hands-on graffiti removal and aninteractive book for children.“We deliver awareness as well asdoing the obvious thing and cleaningoff the tags,” said Lianne.Passionate about art and recognisinggraffiti’s place as an art form, Lianne, atextile artist, is already well-known in theNgaruawahia Community for her workas Co-ordinator of the Twin Rivers ArtsCentre. She sees part of the solution infinding legal avenues for graffiti to beshown as art. Watch this space.“encourages them to do more.I’m glad that we got rid of itbecause if we leave it then it justAlex““When we erased the graffitiit made the town look betterand more welcoming.“ makeKaitlynIt felt good toa difference.Georgia“at us, but I am glad I did it.I felt a bit nervous at firstthat someone might be angryMegan“ graffiti looks disgusting.I was glad that I did it becauseCory““““www.waikatodistrict.govt.nz3

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