The Flow Project: Promoting Healing and Resilience Through Art

Introduction: The Flow Project was a creative recovery initiative, funded by the PHN (Primary Health Network), aimed at supporting communities affected by floods in Manning Point, Mitchells Island, and surrounding areas. The project involved a series of community lantern making workshops and culminated in a grand finale event, fostering community participation and healing through creative expression.
Background: Creative Recovery Initiative to Promote Healing and Resilience Following a Devastating Flood
After experiencing a devastating flood, the communities of Manning Point and Mitchells Island were left to face the emotional and psychological aftermath. Acknowledging the vital role of creative recovery in such circumstances, the PHN awarded Lisa Hort with funding for the Flow Project. This initiative was backed by the Mid Coast Council and the Lower Manning Resilience Group, with support from the Flood Recovery grant.
1.    Facilitate Creative Recovery: Utilise artistic activities and expression to help individuals affected by the flood cope with trauma and stress.
2.    Engage the Community: Encourage active participation and involvement from community members, nurturing a sense of togetherness and support.
3.    Offer Holistic Support: Collaborate with local organisations, emergency services, and health professionals to provide comprehensive assistance during the recovery process.
4.    Showcase Award-Winning Film: Screen the award-winning film "Up Armidale Road" to celebrate the community's strength and resilience.
1.    Lantern Making Workshops: The Flow Project organised a series of lantern making workshops in Manning Point and Mitchells Island. These workshops were open to community members, allowing participants to engage in the creative process together.
2.    Flow Project Finale at Vic Shoesmith Reserve: The grand finale event took place at Vic Shoesmith Reserve, providing a central gathering place for the community. The event featured a free BBQ organised by the Lions Club, emergency services' presence, a Lifeline Connect tent offering support services, a community recovery officer from Mid Coast Council, and a disaster clinician from the health department.
3.    Lantern Parade and Film Screening: Following the gathering at Vic Shoesmith Reserve, the participants took part in a poignant lantern parade, symbolising the journey of hope, resilence and recovery. The parade culminated at the Manning Point Bowling Club, where the award-winning film "Up Armidale Road" was screened, celebrating the resilience and strength of the community.
4.    Live Performances: The evening was further enriched by captivating live performances from local talents Grace & Hugh and The Band. The music performances created an atmosphere of unity and connection, uplifting the spirits of the attendees.
1.    Successful Creative Recovery: The Flow Project's lantern making workshops and finale event provided a safe and expressive outlet for individuals affected by the flood, contributing to their emotional recovery and well-being.
2.    High Levels of Participation: The initiative achieved significant community engagement, with participants from different age groups and backgrounds coming together to support one another in the healing process.
3.    Comprehensive Support: Collaborating with various local organisations and professionals allowed for a holistic approach to recovery, ensuring that participants had access to necessary resources and assistance.
4.    Celebrating Resilience: The screening of "Up Armidale Road" and live performances showcased the community's strength and determination to overcome challenges, fostering a sense of pride and hope among attendees.
Conclusion: The Flow Project's success in promoting creative recovery in the flood-affected communities of Manning Point, Mitchells Island, and surrounding areas highlights the significance of art in healing and fostering community resilience. The initiative's inclusivity, collaboration, and celebration of the community's spirit exemplify how creative endeavours can play a crucial role in supporting communities during challenging times.

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The Flow Project: Promoting Healing and Resilience Through Art<br>
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