There's a real push for community art in the form of murals this year. Another one is being unveiled in southwest Rochester, but this time around local teens helped leave a positive mark on their neighborhood.
One of the teens hopes will inspire everyone to help clean up the streets.
"Years ago I was afraid of driving down Genesee and Frost because of the surroundings," Rochester mother Denise Bordeaux said.
A new mural on the corner now helps Bordeaux see beauty and potential, not a hopeless neighborhood.
"It brightens up the whole corner it gives it a whole different outlook," Bordeaux said.
Her son Cezanne Louissaint helped create this mural. Teen Empowerment commissioned the work. Hiring a Brazilian artist and pairing him with five teen apprentices. They transformed an ugly wall into community art.
"That really kick started my engine and makes me want to be better," Louissaint said.
One hundred area teens helped come up with the design - neighbors rising up to build a clean, safe community. Just to steps away are abandoned homes like this and trashed yards, not to mention rampant drug and gang activity but already some teens are inspired to change this. Mahalea Cabrera and her mom drove to the mural after hearing about it during News 8 at Sunrise.
"I think it's beautiful and Its nice that kids can create stuff like that," Rochester teen Mahalea Cabrera said.
"I think if we had more teens doing things like this maybe the city might become better," Rochester mom Maritza Cabrera said.
Teen Empowerment knows this mural won't "create diamonds out of rhinestones" overnight, but hopes it's a spark for change
"They can no longer be considered a statistic," Louissaint said. "They can be considered as a person who can do stuff positive in life."
A catalyst to help residents reclaim their neighborhood. Teen Empowerment used grant money from the city and area organizations to make it a reality. The group is having an official unveiling ceremony Monday at 6 p.m.