$2.6m to support life changing creative projects in Victoria

Big Hart Project OArtists and creatives across the state are joining forces with community organisations to help tackle some of the state’s biggest challenges with support from the Victorian Government’s new Future Makers for Change program. $2.6 million will support nine game changing projects that will showcase the powerful role creativity can play in driving social change.

An initiative of the Creative State strategy, Future Makers for Change is part of a new Social Impact program, a cross-government initiative to support creative projects that complement government efforts in areas including family violence, gender equality, social cohesion and mental health.

Supported projects range from the creation of a new visual arts studio that aims to unlock the creative talents of young African immigrants in the Footscray region while providing new career pathways, to a project led by St Martins Youth Arts Centre that will create a series of films that address the stigmatisation of young transgender people.

Virtual reality company Liminal VR has received support to create a VR experience designed to help teenagers improve their mental wellbeing and build resilience. The project will be piloted in ten schools in the Greater Geelong area before being made available free to schools across the nation and beyond.

Each project will be delivered as a collaboration between creative practitioners and partners with on the ground expertise and each project will have access to an evaluation partner that will track the development and progress of the project, gathering data about how the creative activity has created change in the community.

The initiative has brought together Creative Victoria with other government departments and agencies including, VicHealth, Office of Prevention and Women’s Equality and the Department of Premier and Cabinet. For more information, visit: www.creative.vic.gov.au for details.

Image: courtesy of Big hART

The Future Makers for Change Recipients include:

Asking for Trouble (auspiced by Clunes Neighbourhood House) – $232,000
Art Attack is a two-year creative outreach program co-designed with and for young people in Clunes to address and improve both mental wellbeing and social cohesion.

Bec Orpin (ausiced by Story Book Pty Ltd) – $300,000
Melbourne artist/designer Bec Orpin and creatives from the Jacky Winter Group will partner with mental health organisation Smiling Mind on a major public art initiative and youth mental health awareness campaign.

Big hART – $300,000
Digital O is a digital art, augmented reality and technology initiative that aims to tackle family violence in The Pines, Frankston North through building confidence, agency and skills in young women aged 12-15.

Colour Between the Lines creative collective (auspiced by Co-Health Arts Generator) – $300,000
Colour Between the Lines is a new initiative run by a collective of six experienced African artists in partnership with Co-Health Arts Generator to help young African women develop vocational pathways and new income streams.

ILBIJERRI Theatre Company – $300,000
From Tough Places to Safe Spaces will bring together ILBIJERRI Theatre Company and the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency to develop and tour a new theatre work that challenges old – and inspires new – narratives around family violence.

Jane Scott (auspiced by the Royal Women’s Hospital Foundation) – $300,000
A visual arts project by curator Jane Scott and photographer Ponch Hawkes in partnership with Women’s Health Victoria that aims to challenge norms and generate a public discussion around how society views women and ageing.

Liminal VR Pty Ltd – $300,000
The Virtual Reality Wellbeing Platform will employ new technologies to improve the mental wellbeing and resilience of young people. Developed by Liminal VR with Wellness in Schools Australia, the platform will help teenagers develop their emotional regulation and resilience.

Punctum – $245,000
The Pavilion Project will create a new artistic, social and civic space to be installed in public parks in Bendigo and Castlemaine. Developed by Punctum in partnership with the Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services, the Pavilion will be designed, programmed and operated by members of the local South Sudanese, Karen and Afghan Refugee communities.

St Martins Youth Arts Centre – $300,000
Escape Velocity is a filmmaking project that brings together St Martins creatives with Darebin Council and Minus 18 – a network for LGBTI young people. The project will create a series of provocative micro videos that address the stigmatisation of young transgender people.