Welcome to ACSO Art
Since 1983, ACSO’s mission has been helping people transition from prison, assisting them in the community, stopping them from re-offending and diverting others from committing crime. Our ethos is simply to create another chance; to promote recovery, to rehabilitate and re-integrate people back into the community and we offer services responding to mental illness, disability, homelessness, unemployment, substance use and offending behaviour throughout the metropolitan area and regional Victoria.
Due to their layers of complexity and criminal justice background, our clients are often excluded from community programs, so our Rehabilitation and Recovery Services provide a range of individually tailored day programs that promote re-integration into community living and a sense of community connectedness. .
Art is one of the therapeutic means used by ACSO to encourage our clients to express emotions, perceptions, feelings and thoughts, and through our Creative Art Program. This program acts as a stepping stone into other community arts programs. We have approximately twenty budding artists from our community based residential services benefiting from this program. The program comprises of weekly art sessions facilitated by our artist in residence, Melinda Wills, who is supported by our Social Educator Team. Every second year the group work towards an art exhibition which provides a valuable opportunity for our clients to not only create the pieces on show, but assist in the coordination of the exhibition and thus realise value and purpose in their contribution.
For many Victorians this is a unique opportunity to gain insight and understanding into the issues faced by our clients and view the creative endeavours of those members of our community that, without these extra supports, would be unlikely to share their creativity and stories with the general public.