Be the Change – Public Art Initiative

The Cultural Arts Council of Douglasville/ Douglas County (CAC) recently launched a new initiative to use public art to transform the community into a dynamic center of creativity and a destination spot. The purpose of public art is not only to enhance the community and improve our quality of life through its ability to enrich an environment, but also to ignite the imagination, encourage thought, and to prompt discourse. Public art benefits the community through placemaking, bringing people together, and can be used as a tool in economic development. Public art can also strengthen personal connections to one’s community.

New to the public art initiative is the “Be the Change” project in partnership with the Douglas County School System.  Each of the bathrooms at North Douglas Elementary School now features encouraging quotes and words of affirmation to remind all students that they are valuable and worthwhile. Principal Kelly of North Douglas Elementary stated, “I am so delighted for the quotes of affirmations on our bathroom stalls. I feel that these quotes will only continue to encourage our scholars that they are worthy and to believe in themselves even if they don’t feel others do. Self-empowerment is the absolute best for scholars of the future.” When students in the school have a hard day, instead of stark walls and institutional paint, they’ll be greeted with beautiful colors and reminders of their potential. The CAC hopes this project will have an influence on the students and the community. It’s a small action, but one that could have a powerful impact on our kids. Executive Director of the Cultural Arts Council, Emily Lightner stated. “We can all use reminders at times that kindness matters and we are ‘enough’.”

Sharanda Wilburn, Renowned artist from Atlanta Georgia was commissioned by the CAC to create the masterpieces at North Douglas Elementary School. As a child she watched her step-father draw, so she picked up a pencil & hasn’t put it down since. As she got older, this love never faded and eventually, she went to college to study art. Ms. Wilburn uses many different mediums, such as pencils, pens, acrylics, charcoal, construction paper, pastels & crayons. She believes that working in mixed media gives her art a different look. Each idea manifests in its own individual style. She is also a teaching artist for the Cultural Arts Council and has been commissioned by many famous politicians and actors such as Queen Latifah.

This project was funded by the Dawn Foudnation grant from the CAC, a nonprofit organization supported in part through memberships and individual donations. The mission of the Cultural Arts Council of Douglasville/Douglas County is to nurture, guide and stimulate the enjoyment of and participation in the arts among Douglas County residents by providing an atmosphere conducive to the arts. Interested in learning more about the public art initiative or want to get involved? Email the CAC at

The Cultural Arts Council  Douglasville/ Douglas County, located at 8652 Campbellton Street in historic downtown Douglasville, Georgia, is open Mondays through Fridays, 9 am to 5 pm. For directions, more information, or to make your reservations, visit or contact the Cultural Arts Council at 770-949-2787.

P.O. Box 2018
Douglasville, Georgia 30133
Phone 770.949.2787   Fax 770.949.5946