The Good Shepherd were delighted to welcome a visit from young people on the Premier League Kicks project and Wolves Foundation ambassador S-X to create some inspiring artwork to brighten up the entrance to the premises.
The young people, aged between 12 and 16, worked with music artist and producer S-X, real name Sam Gumbley, and were led by Birmingham-based graffiti artist ‘Panda’to pen the artwork on a wall at the side of the Good Shepherd.
As well as the logos of the Good Shepherd, Wolves Foundation and the Premier League Kicks project, the design incorporated the word ‘Hope’ and artwork based on a painting from Donna, who volunteers at the Good Shepherd art group.
The graffiti has already received some hugely positive feedback from Good Shepherd service users as they arrived to access the food service the following day, as well as the charity’s staff and volunteers.
“We’ve worked closely with the Wolves Foundation for a number of years and we discussed some community art projects,” said Good Shepherd CEO Tom Hayden.
“Wolverhampton has a fantastic community spirit – it’s a really diverse city and people really get behind each other. We wanted something to capture the essence of Wolverhampton and the work we do.
“The artwork is in a key place really, where people queue up to access our food services, so having something that shows a bit of hope could be quite a powerful statement to people when they visit.”
The PL Kicks project is designed to offer young people the chance to develop via football-based activities and educational workshops, and those belonging to the Foundation’s ‘Action Pack’ Youth Voice group came up with the graffiti idea.
The Kicks participants were given the opportunity to create their own artwork to take home, before getting to work on the larger design.
Luke Shearing, inclusion and cohesion manager at Wolves Foundation explained: “The Action Pack has members from all of our Premier League Kicks sessions across the city – Aldersley, Bilston, Heath Town and All Saints.
“The whole project is youth-led and at the first meeting the young people discussed what they wanted to do to give back to the city.
“They wanted to help the Good Shepherd, particularly after seeing the Molineux Sleepout in November where we worked together to raise funds.
“Social action is a big part of our Kicks programme and I’m so proud of the young people.
“It was a brilliant turnout and great to see so many youngsters keen to make a difference to their community.”
The graffiti followed a visit made to one of the Foundation’s PL Kicks sessions at Aldersley Arena when Good Shepherd project worker Paul Burns and service user Matt met some of the young people involved in the project.
Grammy-nominated artist S-X, who was born in Wolverhampton and still lives in the local area, has previously supported the Good Shepherd as well as now being an Ambassador of Wolves Foundation.
“It’s been a while for me doing something with the Foundation, so after the pandemic it’s good to be back,” he said.
“The graffiti art looks great and I’ve really enjoyed it.
“We didn’t have something like Premier League Kicks when I was growing up, so to be able to come here and be hands on with the kids is unreal. I love the city so it just makes sense.”