Ten young people who helped design and create Birmingham City Council’s owl for the city’s Big Hoot event have received an award from the High Sheriff for their efforts.
The mosaic owl, which currently stands outside the Pavilions shopping centre, in High Street, was created by internationally renowned artist Caroline Jariwala with young people aged between 11 and 17 years old who are in residential care in Birmingham.
The owl, named ‘Starlight’ by the children themselves, was designed to raise awareness of the need for more foster and adoptive parents in Birmingham. The youngsters, from Camborne House and Clissold Street children’s homes, worked with Caroline to create their own artwork – including a depiction of children holding hands – which the artist then transferred onto mosaic tiles and applied to the owl.
As a result of their hard work, the group were nominated by the Lord Mayor’s office for the Young Person’s Inspiring Others category at the High Sheriff Awards, which recognises young people in the West Midlands whose actions have inspired or helped others – an award they went on to win.
Cllr Brigid Jones, cabinet member for children’s services, said: “The young people involved have shown a tremendous deal of enthusiasm, creativity and flexibility in the way they have worked on this project – and we know from their feedback that they have found the experience enjoyable and rewarding. We could not be prouder of them!
“This award is richly deserved and I would like to congratulate everyone involved in creating this owl, which is not only part of an exciting citywide art project, but is also helping to raise awareness of the need for more foster and adoptive parents across the city.”
The owl is one of 89 individually decorated pieces on display throughout the Birmingham area, forming a trail for people to follow. Each owl will then be auctioned to raise money for Birmingham Children’s Hospital.
For more information on the Big Hoot, please visit www.thebighoot.co.uk.