Marietta Dantonio-Fryer, SAF Outreach Coordinator, just completed the “Guardian Mural” Outreach project at the Elwyn Facility, Pennsylvania. This Outreach project is with a group of adolescents who are mentally challenged and some who are also physical and sexual abuse survivors. The mural weighs over 1,000 pounds and includes plaster death masks of the children’s faces. The children themselves requested this, and it was an act of trust in having them sit while the masks hardened. Then children selected another child as a guardian, to look over and protect them during the process, fostering trust.
Then the children (teenagers) asked to have mirrors embedded into the eyes of the masks. Their reason was so when people looked into their eyes they would see reflections of themselves. Because as the children put it, “society fears them but has created them.”