Crime Prevention Ottawa, in partnership with the City of Ottawa, offers funding for outdoor mural projects that supports preventing vandalism and tagging, community safety, and the beautification of Ottawa neighbourhoods. The Paint it Up! Program empowers youth through community arts.

Since its inception in 2010, Paint it Up! has involved more than 2,700 youth aged 12 to 25. There have been close to 85 mural projects across the city supported by an average grant of $5,000. 

  • How to apply: To find out more about the program, download the guidelines and the application form. 
  • Application deadline: All applications must be e-mailed, FridayApril 23, 2021. 
  • Pandemic safety and working virtually: Paint It Up Information Sheet

View presentation from information session on March 23rd from 12 to 1 p.m. 

How it works

Each project must involve:

  • A pre-approved mural location
  • A non-profit organization with expertise in youth
  • An artist or arts organization with expertise in murals
  • A representative of the proposed location of the mural

It should also:

  • Contribute to a clean, safe and beautiful city
  • Be completed under the guidance of an adult mentor
  • Seek to increase the skills or employability of youth
  • Involve the community, youth and property owner in the mural design
  • Engage youth in all aspects of the project

Get inspired by taking a look at our:

A note about evolving language

CPO has made efforts to update the language being used around vandalism in the CPO promotions and communications surrounding the Paint it Up! Program. When referring to the unauthorized marking of property and discussing how CPO promotes engagement with youth for community beautification, we have discontinued the word “graffiti”.

Through the Paint it Up! Program and beyond, CPO is committed to understanding and reflecting upon the implications that language carries surrounding urban art, graffiti, and vandalism. The contemporary meaning of the word graffiti is a style of art with historical and modern-day ties to the Black community, and should not be equated with conversations about illegal property marking and tagging.

This critical learning opportunity is a part of CPO’s commitment to approaching all facets of work with an anti-racist lens, as set out in our Strategic Plan.

Related Paint it Up! Resources

Learn more about the Paint it Up! program, access our guidelines and application form, and find out how to engage youth in your community.