The Stories We Tell

Local nonprofit creates a safe space of healing for young creatives

By: Ciarra Williams

WordPlay Cincy, a local nonprofit, creates a safe place for young creatives. Founded in 2012, the organization saw the lack of access to learning and resources many children faced and decided to create a place they could feel safe and grow into their authentic selves.

WordPlay nurtures each of its participants through community and support, which allows each student to discover themselves through a plethora of programs, including reading, writing, and storytelling.  

WordPlay masters this by using four elements of Personal development, community building, creative expression, and future orientation. Not only do they offer these free resources to the community, but they also offer school-based programs with their partnership with Cincinnati Public schools.

“If a child can feel safe and loved in their community, they can come back to that same neighborhood and breathe life into it.” 

WordPlay Cincy recently collaborated with ArtWorks Cincinnati to create their beautiful mural. The idea for the mural derived from ArtWork’s lead teaching artist & designer Brandon Hawkins, owner of Soul Palette LLC, Anissa Pulcheon teaching artist, WordPlay students, and many more.

 The story behind the mural comes from many influential literary activists like Nikki Giovanni, James Baldwin, Mary Oliver, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Amanda Gorman, Sandra Cisneros, and Joy Harjo.  The location is 1556 Chase Ave in Northside Cincinnati.

WordPlay Cincy hopes the mural will connect the students of WordPlay to the activist, inspiring and giving courage to more generations of writers, poets, artists, and future activists. 

Video By: Amy Tuttle, Director of programming for WordPlay Cincy,


For more information on Wordplays local events, programs, or how to become a volunteer, please visit them at

To donate to the mural, please visit

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