Empowering our Life Skills participants through art

By Sachithri Kodagoda, 8 December 2023 , Comments

Last month customers from our Life Skills service in Parramatta and North Rocks held an art exhibition showcasing their remarkable talents to family, friends, and Northcott staff.

The idea for the exhibition came from the customers when they expressed their desire to unleash their creativity.

“When we identified that this was our customers group goal, we had a meeting with Northcott’s Fundraising team and asked if we could apply for a grant. To our delight after a few weeks the Parramatta Leagues Clubs generously gave us a grant to fund the whole project,” says Melia, Life Skills Coordinator.

At the heart of the idea was the desire for our customers to express their creativity and foster a sense of community through their art.

Creating a show

Over the next two and half months, staff and customers worked together to create the show. All customers were given the opportunity to participate. Through regular meetings, they purchased art materials, booked the venue, and created each art project. These experiences also allowed customers to gain valuable life skills like planning, and how work together in a team.

The art projects all had 4 separate themes. They were “What makes me, me,” “The future, full of hopes and well wishes,” “Fragments of ourselves,” and “Layers and layers: I’m more than what you see on the surface”.

After months of hard work, the result was a collection of artworks that reflected the unique perspectives of each artist.

Supporting customer goals

“By participating in the exhibition, customers not only connected with others but also gained a sense of independence,” says Melia. It also boosted their self confidence and made them realise their creative potential.

Dale, Life Skills customer, and artist is proud of her work. “I drew dolphins at the beach as I really love the beach,” says Dale.

“I drew a city skyline as I was inspired by New York’s skyline. I love the way it looks in movies and I really hope to visit one day,” says Zahra, another talented customer and artist.

On the day

The opening ceremony in Parramatta, was buzzing with excitement. After a presentation of certificates to the talented artists, the exhibition was officially open!

The tmosphere was filled with pride and a sense of accomplishment. Family and friends expressed immense pride in their loved ones’ achievements. The feedback from attendees highlighted the success of the event. “I am delighted in how professional the presentation of the artworks is and I am proud to be here,” said one parent.

A special thank you to the Parramatta Leagues Clubs, without whom the success of the event would not have been possible.

Related content:

Northcott’s Everyday Life Skills program supports customers to develop independence and daily routines. Read how participant Kylie gained independence in the kitchen and how Bec was supported to start her own small business.

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