Allison Freytes - United Way mural

Allison Freytes, of Kankakee, began bringing her mural design to life last month. It is now set for unveiling on Oct. 26. READ MORE

BOURBONNAIS — The United Way of Kankakee & Iroquois Counties will be unveiling the new Community Equity Mural as part of its recent 21-week Equity Challenge.

Residents of both counties are invited to the unveiling at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 26, at Mi Casa Mexican restaurant, 481 S. Main St. (Illinois Route 45/52). There will be an opportunity to participate in an open mic session to share what this mural means to residents.

The mural was designed by Allison Freytes, of Kankakee, and her original artwork is called “We are Stronger Together.” Freytes was selected as the winner of United Way’s design contest after receiving 64.5 percent of the votes.

“My design is based on the concept of unity and strength through diversity and community,” Freytes said of her winning design. “I chose the phrase ‘We are stronger together’ and translated it into the most common languages spoken in the central Illinois region, putting them into different fonts to further represent the beauty in our diversity.

“At the bottom of the mural is a mosaic-style design of people holding hands, with a space in the middle and on either end for community members to join in.”

This is the first outdoor mural to be located in Bourbonnais. The community was chosen as 120 of the Equity Challenge’s 270 participants reside in Bourbonnais. The village partnered with United Way on the challenge, which ran from Martin Luther King Jr. Day to Juneteenth and consisted of weekly learning assignments about equity, racism, bias and more.

For more information, go to myunitedway.org.