Penny’s Mission

ART: Mission Australia Personal Helpers and Mentors Program Case Manager Lillian Shaw, artist Penny Nolan and Mental Health Program Manager Audrey McCall.

ART: Mission Australia Personal Helpers and Mentors Program Case Manager Lillian Shaw, artist Penny Nolan and Mental Health Program Manager Audrey McCall.

Mission Australia have proved to be a guiding light for local artist Penny Nolan, providing her with the necessary motivation to win a battle against mental illness.

Ms Nolan, who is now deep into preparations to host an art exhibition focused on mental health, came into contact with Mission Australia through the Personal Helpers and Mentors Program.

Case Manager Lillian Shaw developed a relationship with Ms Nolan through the initiative.

“I supported Penny with the goals that she set for herself through the program, I was lucky that all I needed to do was allow her to realise how talented she was as an artist,” she said.

“I had to encourage her to try and get her confident back, because she’s very talented and at that time she didn’t think she was.”

With the assistance of Ms Shaw, Ms Nolan was able to ignite her passion for art.

“I was also with Uniting Care Wesley at the time and they held a workshop called ‘Expressions’ with the Department of Rural Health, and we learned new techniques from local artist Diane Turner,” she said.

“After that I painted a picture dedicated to my belated brother, and I realised that I wanted to do more paintings which represented myself, my illness, and my journey to recovery.”

Ms Nolan will be hosting the Recovery Exhibition next month which will be made of the work done by over 30 different artists, representing recovery from mental illness.

“It’s great to see so many people interested in being a part of the exhibition, they’re all coming out of the woodwork,” she said.

Ms Shaw said the exhibition would help provide motivation for those who may not believe in their own artistic talents.

“A little bit of encouragement for someone can go a long way, just to motivate people and let them know they are as good as they are,” she said.

“Some people just don’t recognise how good they are.”

Three workshops have been held in the lead up to the exhibition opening, which Ms Nolan says have all been very successful.

The Recovery Exhibition will be launched on October 11 at the Middleback Arts Centre.

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