The creative works of participants of the Como Social and Leisure Centre’s art therapy program were on show at Sutherland Hospital as part of the 2016 Mental Health Expo Art Exhibition.

Over 50 unique artworks displayed in the atrium in October were available to purchase, with funds raised going towards supporting the art program.

Como Social and Leisure Centre, a St Vincent de Paul Society Special Work, provides a safe and friendly atmosphere for people to socialise, participate in recreational activities and build support networks. It is a joint venture with Sutherland Hospital mental health service.

Elizabeth Cavanagh, who oversees day-to-day operations, said the Centre provides services that help prevent the isolation and loneliness that is often associated with those living with mental health issues.

“Our art therapy program encourages and develops creativity, provides a channel for self-expression and offers relief from life’s daily challenges,” says Elizabeth.

Art therapist Robbi Wyme facilitates the art group and is extremely proud of the pieces exhibited.

“Some of the artists had never painted before joining the art group, others picked up a paintbrush after years of neglect and some have been inspired to continue their artistic practice at home and in community art classes,” says Robbi.

“The annual exhibition offers an opportunity for emerging talent to share their artworks. Our artists were thrilled because Minister for Health, Mrs Jillian Skinner, visited our exhibition.”

The art therapy program is generously supported by the Gymea Tradies Club with the valued assistance of staff and volunteers at Como Social and Leisure Centre.

The Como Social and Leisure Centre Art Group meets every Monday, 10am-12pm.

The Art Group welcomes new participants to join, create artworks together or focus on an individual project.

To visit the centre please contact Como Social and Leisure Centre on comosocialandleisure@sydneyvinnies.org or (02) 9528 4963.

Media contact:  Phyllis Sakinofsky | phyllis.sakinofsky@vinnies.org.au | 0417 446 430