Connecting through creativity

Along with providing people with a place to sleep, regular meals and medical treatment through our various Vinnies services across the state, we also offer a range of programs allowing people to find and share their voice through creativity.

One such service is Creative Space Southern Highlands in Bowral. Opening in late 2017 as an initiative of the former Ability Links program to promote community inclusion, Creative Space is a welcoming and accessible environment for everyone to come together through a shared love of creativity and making art.

Over the past year, it has brought together people of all abilities to build confidence, share their knowledge and gain new skills. The service supported in excess of 110 people, who refer to themselves as Makers, during this time.

For Tania McInnes, Creative Space Art Coordinator, the service is much more than its name suggests.

“Creating a place of welcome is key,” explains Tania.

With the impact of COVID-19 preventing people from attending regular workshops and classes in person, Tania has worked to keep the spirit of Creative Space alive by producing creativity packs available for contactless pick-up or delivery.

Catering to individual’s creative preferences and interests, packs range from ceramic and wooden items to decorate, pre-stamped canvas postcards to send to ‘someone who needs to hear from you’, drawing and painting supplies, craft, clay and small sculpture resources.

“We have tried to be as responsive as possible to continue providing social connection and a strong sense that we are here operating.

“Many Makers were unable to leave their homes or couldn’t afford to purchase materials they’d like to use, so it’s wonderful for us to be able to continue to answer that call.”