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Community Arts | Nurturing creativity by and for our communities

“This project has helped me to feel connected with people, [it] has made this one of the most happiest experiences that I have had since I arrived in Australia. Now I feel more motivated and more concerned about the situation that we migrants have and how we can get through while still enjoying life…”

Dream Plan Do participant


CANWA’s Lotterywest Dream Plan Do is a tailored capacity-building program that strengthens the skills of culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) community groups who want to develop community arts projects sharing their culture, stories and experiences with each other and a wider audience.

The program supports the groups through project management, budgeting, community engagement and production. Program participants are matched with arts and cultural practitioners to help plan, develop and deliver the project.

Dream Plan Do has opened up access to newly established cultural groups that have not previously connected to the arts sector.  It has given people confidence to step forward and share their stories, tapping into the creative energy of people who are carving out new lives in Western Australia with determination and passion.

The initial program in numbers:

  • Do | 163 participants
  • Create | 44 workshops
  • Enjoy | 1295 audience
  • Employ | 21 artists/artsworkers

Check out some of the incredible community groups who have produced their community arts projects through this program below.

📸Western Empire members with their mentor Matt Aitken. Image: Marnie Richardson

Palestinian Community of WA | is a group of people who have a Palestinian background, are Palestinian migrants and generational Palestinian Australians focused on promoting strong relationships, wellbeing, and assisting the needs within their community while also facilitating integration and promoting roles for youth in the community.

Their project, Palestinian Threads and Stitches: A Tapestry of Home and Diaspora, which received financial and mentor support through the Dream Plan Do program focused on Palestinian tatreez – a traditional type of embroidery which stands as a material embodiment of cultural heritage and stories. Bringing together twelve Palestinian women living in Western Australia, the participants stitched their stories together in to a tapestry reflecting their personal history as well as the overall diaspora of Palestinians. The group then held an exhibition to display these material outcomes and share their narratives with a wider audience.

📸 Palestinian Threads and Stitches. Image: Michelle Troop courtesy of CAN

CREA | created by Colombian migrants to Perth. The organisation sees clowning as a method for sparking joy, social connection, and mental health support. Their workshops are aimed towards those who may be experiencing emotional or financial hardship and are unable to access social safety nets like Medicare, mental health support and income support.

Their Dream Plan Do project, called Migration of Me were a series of workshops designed to guide participants through aspects of artistic expression in an effort to encourage them to utilise this tool to help them cope with life’s challenges. Participants were encouraged to develop their own clown persona as well, giving an outlet to their personal creative thoughts and ideas.

📸 CREA Clowning Performance. Image: Evelyn Vargas

Western Empire | started by members of the South Sudanese community to share their cultural traditions of music, dance, and wrestling with the Western Australian community. By holding regular meetings, the group can learn South Sudanese culture and language – giving young people an outlet to link up and preserve their culture while gaining mental health benefits through community connectedness.

Their produced and mentored project via Dream Plan Do involved five weeks of music and dance workshops for participants from ten different South Sudanese tribes which culminated in a community showcase celebrating the dance and song they had learned in that time.

📸 Western Empire community celebration // Image: Marnie Richardson


The Chamber of Arts and Culture WA acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Western Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities.

We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders both past and present.