An innovative, one-night-only youth art exhibition Our Community Vision showcased local young people’s vision for the Geelong community in September.
The public art exhibition, coordinated by Barwon Child, Youth & Family’s (BCYF) Communities That Care ‘Youth Advisory Group’, reflected on what local young people wish to see, now and in the future, in the places they call home.
The event aimed to draw the attention of other young people, parents, community members and local leaders to the local issues our young people are identifying, and the ideas they have for change.
Works from the exhibition are available to view online on a dedicated page on the BCYF website.
Communities That Care (CTC) is a program designed to prevent problem behaviours in teenagers by reducing risk factors to problematic social issues. The program works with many partners in the northern suburbs of Geelong, to support schools, parents, and neighbourhoods to ensure young people are provided the best support and opportunities for their healthy development.
The CTC Youth Advisory Group (YAG) is made up of young people from the local community. Its vision is for young people to be offered opportunities for connections and positive role models, to recognise the contribution young people make in the community, and to improve their sense of worth, therefore reducing the risk of them experiencing health and social problems.
The art exhibition, funded by the Victorian Government through the Victorian Youth Fest 2022 grant program, showcased YAG members’ own artworks across a variety of mediums.
“Our Community Vision aims to highlight local issues from the perspective of young people in the region,” BCYF Manager Family & Community Services, Toni Gauntlett, said.
“It offers them the opportunity to share ideas, to express themselves creatively, and to connect meaningfully with others in their community via the creation of artworks.”
Ms Gauntlett said that young people in the Geelong community need more and diverse opportunities to come together, to share their ideas and skills through collaborative projects, and to have a voice in the community.
“This exhibition not only grants them that voice, but also celebrates the contributions of young people, predominantly from across the northern suburbs of Geelong, while working towards improving low levels of community attachment and participation,” she said.
For more information about Communities That Care, please contact BCYF’s CTC Coordinator on 5226 8900.