Response can mean many things – Care, comfort, connection, reframing, resilience building, empowerment, re-storying, celebration, memorialising. The arts can play a deep, real role in supporting communities and individuals to tackle disasters and the potential of reframing life, landscape and connection beyond the impact.
In my experience, arts plays a critical, but hugely undervalued role, in this process (disaster recovery). However, I don’t believe it is art as a spectator activity – it is the participation, the involvement in the creative process that makes the difference.
– Bruce Esplin, Emergency Services Commissioner, Vic 2011
Communities across the world continue to be hit by an unprecedented wave of natural disasters leaving communities on the long road to social, economic and cultural recovery. A growing body of evidence indicates that, particularly in times of community distress, the arts can provide great benefits to personal and community wellbeing, such as increased community cohesiveness, confidence and resilience, improved physical and mental health, reduced feelings of isolation, new personal and creative skills, strengthened connections to place, and a sense of shared optimism.
“Taking time out to be part of such a thing I think although it’s a challenge it’s such a wonderful learning and growing opportunity”
– Linton Brimblecombe, Land Art Project