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"I'm only young but that's how I will feel forever": The evaluation of Big hART's Lucky Project

Palmer, D. (2008) "I'm only young but that's how I will feel forever": The evaluation of Big hART's Lucky Project. Murdoch University



The following report provides a review of Big hART‘s work on what has come to be known as the Lucky Project. The Lucky Project encapsulates Big hART‘s work in the North West of Tasmania since 2006. It includes the ‘Radio Holiday‘, Drive-In Holiday, Drive, This is Living and support for other projects such as Get Lucky (later called Lucky Project), Love Zombies and projects with the II Heads Crew skater group. Throughout this work arts-based practice has been used to help make a difference to the lives of different groups. Big hART used its community-based approach to draw members of these groups into task-focused workshops, arts and cultural activities (including the production of photographic work, radio production, music, performance theatre, film, narrative and writing pieces, and a range of other performance and arts-based activities) and community involvement in media and social policy change. As well as the intrinsic value of encouraging members of the community to participate in arts and cultural practice, the intention of the work was to 1) divert participants from crime, 2) bring together and encourage intergenerational involvement between four groups – teenage mothers, children, seniors and young men at risk, 3) provide opportunities for other personal and social developmental experiences (such as education, training, employment and community and civic participation). In other words, the intention of Big hART was to help ‘empower‘ and assist young people and others to tell their stories, help build people‘s sense of community, and encourage conditions that impact on crime prevention.

Although not solely restricted to work concerned with crime prevention, the evaluation will begin by examining the achievements of Big hART in relation to the plans as set out in its funding agreement with the Commonwealth Government‘s Office of Crime Prevention. Under this agreement Big hART established what it called the Community Crime Prevention Catalyst Programme Tasmania. This three-year project used task-focused workshops, cultural activities and a media strategy to divert participants from crime and to breakdown distrust between the aforementioned social groups. As a consequence this report focuses on the period from May 2006 to early October 2008. The report also turns its attention to other project objectives as set out by funding partners such as the Department of Transport & Regional Services - Regional Partnerships Programme, the Department of Family and Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Mental Health Community Based Programme, and the Australia Council‘s Tasmanian Regional Engagement Strategy.

This report does two things. Section One describes the purposes of the evaluation and considers the aims and aspirations of Big hART and its major funding partners, comparing it with the evidence of success. This section involves what might be called an ‘audit review‘ of the work. The second section draws on other evidence and recent scholarship within the field of community cultural development to draw out lessons learnt about how this was achieved, the approaches used by Big hART and the range of unintended but positive outcomes emerging from the work. This section involves what might be called an ‘open inquiry‘ into the personal, social and organisational changes and benefits brought about by Big hART. It is the combination of both of these approaches that helps illuminate both what was achieved and the processes used to create conditions for community improvement (Belfiore & Bennett, 2007).

Item Type: Report
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Arts
Series Name: Technical Report. Lucky Project
Publisher: Murdoch University
Copyright: © 2008 Big hART
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