Traveller Wellbeing through Creativity. Photo credit: Creative Ireland.

Traveller Wellbeing through Creativity. Photo credit: Creative Ireland.

Five creative projects have received funding under the Traveller Wellbeing through Creativity initiative developed by the Department of Health (Healthy Ireland Programme), the Creative Ireland Programme, the HSE and the Arts Council.

The purpose of the programme is to support creative projects that will have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of the Traveller community.

The projects are:

  1. Guth na Mincérí

Dance, film, music, visual art, craft and discussion will celebrate Traveller culture in a highly visible programme. As well as celebrating the best of Traveller culture, this six-month creative programme will allow space for commemorating loved ones.

Partnering organisations: The Gaff (Limerick Theatre and Performance Hub Ltd.), The Limerick City Traveller Health Programme, William (WILLZEE) Casey, Limerick and Clare’s Local Creative Youth Partnership and The Learning Hub, Limerick.

  1. The Pisreóg Project

The Pisreóg Project is a Traveller-designed and led project that seeks to collect, document and celebrate the superstitions and traditions of the Traveller Community in Ballymun and the variances within superstitions from family to family and county to county.

Partnering organisations: St Margaret’s Traveller Community Association, Men’s and Women’s Literacy and Leadership Groups and Axis Ballymun.

  1. Cultural Action, Cultural Rights: A Foundation for Wellbeing

This project will focus on the importance of cultural identity and sense of self as being core for wellbeing among the Traveller community. The project will shine a positive light on the rich culture of the Traveller community which is often overshadowed by negative stereotypes commonly held in Irish society and reinforced by negative media coverage.

Partnering organisations: Galway Traveller Movement, writer Rosaleen McDonagh, Alice McDowell, Misléor Festival of Nomadic Cultures and Julie Flavin Atmos Collective.

  1. Travellers on Screen

Five different Traveller groups will participate in creative performances, filmed in an arts centre in their region of the country. A series of five-day workshops will bring together novice actors, filmmakers and scriptwriters, through impactful training. The training will also involve a mental health component using mindfulness and creative play to illustrate the power of expressive communication to expand horizons in a positive and culturally relevant context.

This project is being developed by Cluster Fox Films, led by Traveller film director/actor/writer John Connors.

  1. Gallery of Photography Ireland, Martin Beanz Warde and Open Doors Initiative

Martin Beanz Warde will be supported to work in a deep and engaged way with 10 Traveller participants. Over a series of one-to-one conversations, Martin will collaborate with each participant to create photographs which explore new ways of representing the diversity and vibrancy of Traveller culture. Open Doors Initiative, experts on social inclusion, will provide mentoring and support, and artist mentoring will also be provided by Anthony Haughey.

Partnering organisations: Gallery of Photography Ireland, Martin Beanz Warde (Traveller artist, poet, comedian, podcaster) and Open Doors Initiative.


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