A new mural on an outside wall of Sarah’s Inn Forest Park headquarters is both a celebration of 40 years helping sufferers of domestic violence and a beacon of hope for those in need of assistance.
On Tuesday, Oct. 6, Executive Director Carol Gall, Sarah’s Inn staff and volunteers, and community members gathered at 1547 Circle Ave. for the official reveal of the mural and the kick-off of the organization’s 40th anniversary celebrations.
“Our story is one of hope and faith, and we tried to mimic that in our mural,” Gall said.
October is Domestic Violence Action Month, an obviously significant time for Sarah’s Inn, whose mission is “to improve the lives of those affected by domestic violence and to break the cycle of violence for future generations.”
At the event, Gall said that Domestic Violence Action Month isn’t just about awareness; it’s about taking action.
“We have a safe space here, but we can’t do this alone,” Gall said, urging people to take time to reflect on how they can take action and ask themselves, “How can I help end domestic violence?”
Artist Antonio Ruppert, the woman behind the mural’s design and creation, is an active supporter of Sarah’s Inn. She’s also a client.
“I felt like I had no hope,” said Ruppert about the time before she first came to Sarah’s Inn as a client. “I even felt like I had no voice.” But the organization, she said, changed her life. “Sarah’s Inn is a house of hope.”
To conceptualize and design the mural, focus groups of clients, board members and staff met in July to discuss how to best represent the organization. After pulling together concepts and ideas, Ruppert created the design, which took about a month to complete.
Part of Sarah’s Inn’s 40th anniversary celebration is their Stand Tall event, and Gall said they want as many people to attend the virtual event as possible. It’s a fundraiser with the goal of raising money to support Sarah’s Inn’s vital programs. But it’s also a chance for clients to share their stories and for people to learn more about the mission of the organization.