Creative connection with community

Thomas Hoffmann is creative guy. He enjoys doing art and being creative. On Fridays, he participates in the art group with Leisure Networks.  

To help boost his confidence, and to build stronger connection with his community, Sam Wallace, Employment Coach at Leisure Networks suggested Thomas turn one of his designs into a public mural. 

“Thomas and I have been working on a design for a while and were inspired on our walks along the river bend in Highton,” explains Sam. 

Together, Sam and Thomas scouted out a suitable wall within Thomas’ local community of Highton, Geelong. They found the perfect wall, located in the laneway behind the Woolworths in Highton village, and sought permission to paint from both the tenant and landlord. 

The project, intended to be a collaborative exercise between Thomas and Sam, has become something bigger with Thomas’ parents getting actively involved. His dad, Michael, whitewashed the wall ready for the mural and his mum, Diane, will be coming along to help with the painting 

Thomas worked with Sam to create a budget for the mural, and they went together to purchase the necessary materials. 

“Waurn Ponds Bunnings were super receptive when I contacted them for support,” says Sam. “Generous to the cause, they donated $400 in vouchers.” 

While still a work in progress, feedback from Highton locals has been very positive. 

“So far the locals are loving it,” says Sam. “They are saying that it looks way nicer than the tags and graffiti on the walls.” 

Thomas and Sam are hoping to engage with other local store owners to brighten up the laneway with more murals. They hope to bring on more creative Leisure Networks customers to support them to further increase their confidence and engagement with the wider community. 

Leisure Networks respectfully acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands and waters of Australia. We are committed to inclusive communities.