Hi my name is Laurel Gorman and I'm the CROP coordinator here within the City of
Boroondara. The CROP program is a program that works with people who have experience of mental health issues and we're dealing with the isolation and the disadvantage that that causes within their lives.
The project itself is speaking with the clients about how we can engage with the broader community within the City of Boroondara on issues about mental health, try and reduce the stigma, but also present people who experience that stigma in a more positive life
So the funding that we applied for was two prong in a sense, in that we used it to create the artwork, so we engaged an artist who was very experienced in sculpture and public sculptures. We also used the funding to create the information stand, so the Men’s Shed at Kew built the wooden plinths and then we produced the information cards that went on it.
They want to have ownership instead of other people putting images and information out about mental health, they wanted to control what represents a major part of their life. So the benefit for them was that they were empowered, they also got that social connection by coming together weekly to create the art or to help project manage.
The greatest benefit is for on the day at these exhibitions is that they get to be seen as artists and that there is no myth around and other that they're there people who are just producing really fantastic art.