I have been the 'Artist in Residence' at Oberstown Children Detention Campus for over a year now.
During this time, and in collaboration with the young people detained at Oberstown, we have successfully completed several projects.
We began our first project with words - names, short sayings, lyrics and poetry. After a number of classes we looked at the work of Maya Angelou - an American poet and activist. We considered her poem ‘Still I Rise’. It is a public protest poem. In it she builds a space to look back at the struggle and a space to look confidently forward by calling for joy in the darkness.
Together with the young people we selected two lines from this poem;
‘Up from a past that’s rooted in pain, I rise.
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear, I rise.’