Arts Program

Connections was established in 1992 and auspiced by Inverell Shire until 2015. Connections merged with BEST Employment in October 2015 and when this occurred, a vacant Support workers for art program participants are covered by the NDIS, but participants’ tuition and materials are not. As people with disability are largely excluded from creative opportunities in our district, mostly due to lack of built-in support or stigma, we strive to give people the same chance to pursue their artistic vision, so seek the materials to make that accessible for the people who want to engage. Premises owned by BEST, was established as arts centre for Connections clients. Initially starting with 10 participants, the arts program been so popular, over 60 people now access a range of creative arts programs including: painting, sculpture, drama, music, woodwork and lure-making. Demand from across the region is expected to continue to grow. Funding will provide a range of art supplies, including paints, brushes, pencils, coloured pencils, pens, modelling clays, sketch/drawing pads, and canvases, in response to demand from our studio arts groups for at least one year. We also seek funding to assemble 20 personal protection packs to each of the woodworking participants, with extra for new artists and some special safety equipment. Having their own safety gear prevents cross-contamination from those with chronic ear or eye infections, and also allow people to care for and maintain their own equipment.