• Reporter Emily Wahlstrom

6th Annual Children’s Mental Health Art Gala

The walls and stage at the Vermilion Regional Centre were lined with 245 artwork pieces as the 6th Annual VIBE Mental Health Art Gala took place on May 1. Submitted art pieces from the Vermilion, Mannville, Clandonald, Innisfree, Kitscoty and Paradise Valley school students were separated into age groups from Grade 1 - 3, 4 - 6, 7 - 9 and 10 - 12. Community residents, NewsCap, and Alberta Mental Health voted on the pieces until first, second and third place winners were chosen in each age group except for Grades 1 - 3. “It’s a great evening! When you see the art pieces you see how well they understand mental health, even the young children in Grades 1 - 3,” said VIBE Wellness Coordinator Pat Calyniuk. The Gala, themed ‘Mental Health Around the World’, provided 525 community residents a free family evening where attendees of all ages could participate in numerous activities such as how to make animal towels, learn to paint with watercolour, plant pot painting, and button making. “This is my first time coming to the Gala even though my wife works with VIBE. It’s been a great evening for myself and our three children,” said Adam Boe. Numerous art project stations were available such as making worry dolls from Guatemala, boomerangs from Australia, Chinese dragons from China, Japanese fans from Japan, as well as beaded key chains representing First Nations, and henna from India. The stations strengthen the gala’s theme. Cupcakes decorated to depict the world, a wide array of fruits (which could be dipped into a chocolate fountain), and beverages were available throughout the evening. During the event, the first, second, and third place art pieces were auctioned in each age group except the Grade 1 - 3 section. “ We would like to extend a huge thank you to everyone who helped make our art gala a wonderful evening! Thank you to all of our volunteers, financial partners, and to everyone who created art and attended the event! It was great to see so many people out from Vermilion and surrounding communities,” said Calyniuk.

#VIBE #YouthArtGala #MentalhealthAwareness

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