WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) - A mural aimed at showcasing Iowa's diversity has been completed in downtown Waterloo on the side of the Levi Bros’ building.
The mural was worked on by University of Northern Iowa students in collaboration with volunteers from the Waterloo Center for the Arts.
The project also involves a website to accompany the mural that highlights members of the Cedar Valley community who "lead and advocate for change and equality."
The website also contains information on racial inequality in Black Hawk County and provides anti-racism resources collected by UNI faculty.
The UNI faculty who started the project to create a dialog about diversity in Black Hawk County and Iowa in general.
“The reason why Black and Brown Iowans don't exist for the rest of the country is that Iowa's practices of self-representation erase the existence of its Black and Brown citizens,” UNI's Dr. Shuaib Meacham said. “The ‘Diversity Is Our Strength’ project sends the message that not only are we here, but we are here doing great things often in the face of formidable opposition and structural obstacles.”
Waterloo Mayor Quentin Hart said of the project “when we get to know our neighbors, share our stories, and listen to understand, we become a stronger more unified community. I am proud to be included in this important project and hope residents and visitors alike will take the time to access the stories behind art.”
Find more details about the 'Diversity is our Strength' project at dios.uni.edu/.