We Will Write the World

We Will Write the World encourages dialogue and interactions between grown-ups and children through large-scale public art pieces.

Once Upon a Time in Germantown, billboard design by Faruq, Faysal, and Khaleel Adger. Photo by Steve Weinik.

  • location Citywide
  • Neighborhood


  • completion date

    December 31, 2023


About the Project 

We Will Write the World encourages dialogue and interactions between grown-ups and children through large-scale public art pieces in the Literacy-Rich Neighborhoods of Fairhill, Germantown, Logan, and South Philadelphia. All of these efforts contribute to the citywide Read by 4th effort to stimulate literacy in Philadelphia. The nation’s most comprehensive early literacy campaign, Read by 4th is guided by the understanding that children who read well by 4th grade have a better chance at school and life success.

The project integrates with the Reading Promise campaign, which was designed for and with Philly families to effect Read by 4th goals. The billboards and murals are centered around five Reading Promises: Make Reading Together Our Special Time, Talk It Up, Champion Your School Success, Create With You, and Protect Your Right To Read. Community meetings explore these topics and each artist works to creatively translate these insights.

Neighborhood Teams 

Each neighborhood team is made up of strong, community-based organizations and Reading Captains. These teams, along with strategists and communicators at Mighty Engine as well as local artists, are working together to develop messages and designs for the art pieces.


Reading Captains: Carolotta Stafford and Erme Maula

Community Partner: South Philly Reading Captains—all volunteers from the neighborhood—invest their time helping families connect with reading and educational resources for their young children. They are taking the lead helping to coordinate South Philadelphia’s billboard project.


Reading Captain: Ciara Vargas

Community Partner: Historic Fair Hill seeks to preserve both the past and future of the Fairhill community, working to revitalize the neighborhood through school partnerships for literacy, greening, and community engagement events.


Reading Captain: Dorian Harris

Community Partner: The Indochinese American Council is working to build opportunities for children, youth, and adults in the Logan community. Among the services they offer are after school and summer education programs at Jay Cooke School and St. Helena-Incarnation Catholic School. These programs include English language instruction, academic support and enrichment, literacy instruction, project-based learning, and exposure to arts and culture.


Reading Captains: Ms. Cherette and Gary King

Community Partner: Founded in 1980, Mt. Airy CDC works to preserve, empower, and advance a vibrant and diverse Mt. Airy.


William Penn Foundation