Art with heart

WESLEY Fire and Clay is a social enterprise and disability day program of Wesley Mission Victoria, which provides supported employment opportunities for up to 41 people living with a disability.19_Lyndal-Slade-F&C

Producing a unique range of ceramics and glassware, Wesley’s Fire and Clay craftspeople have a diverse range of talents and skills. Operating out of Lilydale, the program produces distinctive, functional and decorative pottery pieces and glass jewellery, which are distributed and sold.

Lyndal Slade (pictured) has attended Wesley Fire and Clay since 2012. She described the positive impact the art program has had on her life.

“I was involved in a major car accident in 2002 which resulted in severe head, jaw, nose, rib, knee, hip injuries as well as post trauma amnesia. I was not expected to survive. At the very best, doctors thought I would be on life support for the rest of my life,” Ms Slade said. “I had to re-learn to walk, talk and everything involved with daily life. Now, 11 years later, I am still surprising doctors with my recovery. I even surprise myself.”

Through the creative art program Lyndal has the opportunity to explore painting, drawing, collage and pottery.

Since being with Wesley Fire and Clay, Lyndal said she is now “more open” and can “be more me”.

Wesley CEO Rob Evers said the program gives people with disability the opportunity to shine.

“Wesley Fire and Clay allows people to learn and develop their creative skills in a supportive environment. The annual art exhibition gives the participants the opportunity to be publicly recognised and acknowledged for their work,” he said.

Wesley Fire & Clay’s annual exhibition is on Friday, 28 June 6 – 8.30pm and Saturday, 29 June 11 – 3pm. 101-103 Beresford Road, Lilydale. For more call (03) 9793 5165 or visit www.wesley.org.au.

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