Participatory Democracy and YOU!
In 2020, making your voice heard is more important than ever. Today’s challenges – from the novel Coronavirus to the current political atmosphere – are both new, and the same as always. At every period in history, it is the brave voices that fight systemic inequality, fear, ignorance and marginalization who change our lives and our communities for the better. Often, those voices come from artists, musicians, poets, and more recently from documentarists, social media influencers, storytellers, and those who find inspiration within themselves to use cultural power to effect change . . . in other words, people just like you!
We know it’s sometimes hard to feel like our individual voices matter - we hear you loud and clear. Luckily, amid the challenges of this year, we’re out and about alongside you, working hard to not only make all of our voices heard, but to understand why it’s so important!
Complete the 2020 Census!
Each and every one of us counts in the census, and it is critical that Clevelanders participate this year! Understanding population densities and demographics directly impacts the representation you receive in government and the funding your community receives. Completing the census is just one of many ways to be included and represented in the United States.
The census occurs every 10 years to capture a snapshot of American populations: how many people we have, and where they are located.
Complete your census today: 2020census.gov
What We're Doing to Spread the Word:
Supported by the #VoicesofCLE partnership between Ingenuity and Karamu House, Cleveland Public Library, LAND studio, Downtown Cleveland Alliance and more, and with assistance from the Greater Cleveland 2020 Census Project’s Rapid Response Fund, Ingenuity is inviting young people to our space to work with Census Educators, plus community engagement specialists Sankofa Fine Arts Plus and the Saint Clair Superior Teen Center, to create 2 large-scale murals that help ensure everyone counts!
These murals will be created over the summer and displayed in US Bank/Star Plaza in August, September and October. On Fridays in September, the St. Clair-Superior Teen Center’s Mural Team and Political Team will visit mural sites to help register voters, answer questions and distribute key information on the census. Additional activations will take place in Glenville at future site of the Fab Foundation’s Fab House, in St. Clair-Superior, and in University Circle.
Get Out and VOTE!
Voting By Mail vs. In-Person
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many people are opting for mail-in (also called absentee) ballots this year, to eliminate the need to wait in line and interact with others. You can request your absentee ballot any time before October 31 (12pm), and can do so by printing this form and mailing it back to the Board of Elections, or by calling the Board of Elections and asking that they mail you a form.
Once you receive your ballot and fill it out, you must return it to the Board of Elections. You can do this by mail (postmark by November 2) or by dropping it off at the Board of Elections (must be returned by 7:30pm on November 3).
Voting Early vs. On Election Day
Those voting in-person can choose to vote at their county's Board of Elections before the November 3 election day. Visit https://www.ohiosos.gov/elections/voters/toolkit/early-voting/ for info on dates and times for early voting!
What We're Doing to Spread the Word:
In partnership with #VoicesofCLE, Famicos Foundation, and the Greater Collinwood Development Corporation, Ingenuity will work with Sankofa Fine Arts Plus, the Saint Clair Superior Teen Center Mural Program, and our own community-driven art collective the Ingenuity Ingeneers to place 5 additional large-scale temporary voting-related murals at sites in North Collinwood, St. Clair-Superior, and Downtown Cleveland.
Through our Ignite! Impact Award program, we will work with youth and community activist groups to help further spread the message of importance, along with resources to support, participatory democracy in our area. We invited community members from the Cuyahoga County Jail Coalition, St. Clair-Superior Teen Center, AIR (Artists in Recovery) 216, and Census Educator/founder of Art Block (Mobile Art Cart) David Van Horn to engage with our audience through interviews and discussions around social democracy to not only reach in-person audiences at each of our mural activation sites, but to reach a broader audience through our website, social media channels, emailed newsletters, and those same audiences among our #VoicesofCLE Partners.
Voices of CLE
#VoicesofCLE is a larger project to amplify voices of color in response to demonstrations this spring, and the racial equity and social justice imperatives brought to the forefront. the #VoicesofCLE public art initiative is a call to action for local artists and creators to inspire, communicate and represent through their medium. This effort is meant to provide a platform for freedom of expression and encourage healing while also sparking conversation and action, here and now.
Since June, organizers have connected businesses with local artists to create visual expressions that elevate the perspectives and lived experiences of all our community’s residents on storefronts and building facades throughout Downtown Cleveland and beyond. As we move into 2021, new opportunities are constantly arising. We are exploring sites for mobile galleries and vendor opportunities, permanent murals, and more. We’d love to work with you! Visit voicesofcle.com or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
Hear from some #VoicesofCLE artists in the videos below!