The Thrive Collective, a nonprofit organization that offers sports, arts and mentoring programs to youth across New York City, has completed close to a hundred murals in New York City public schools. In 2022, Thrive hit a major milestone by completing its 300th mural. Some murals, such as “A Better Tomorrow” in the Bronx, “Peace and Unity” in Staten Island and “Be Your Own Superhero” intend to beautify public schools and communities while also stressing the importance of the arts amidst cuts to art education programming.
“I can’t imagine a world without visual or performing arts, music or film, or any expression at all—yet New York City sentences a quarter of a million of our most vulnerable New Yorkers to an artless education every day in over 400 public schools,” says Jeremy Del Rio, founder and executive director of Thrive Collective.
Aside from encouraging art education in schools, the Thrive Collective also hopes to help build resiliency through challenges. The collective created projects such as “Resilience” at PS 329, a school that experienced extensive damage during Hurricane Sandy, and “Kindness Beats the Virus” during COVID-19.
The Thrive Collective has been endorsed by many New York City Council members, worked with thousands of students at dozens of public schools and partners with hundreds of organizations to bring art to the community.
This fall, the organization will be completing more murals across the city, with two projects in partnership with the Brooklyn Nets.