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Unframed Project teaches positive mental health

Published: November 25, 2021 12:34pm

Young Aboriginal girls have been finding a new perspective on themselves through a day-long photography course at Kununurra PCYC as part of the PCYC safeSISTAS Program.

The Unframed Project is an interactive program that teaches positive mental health strategies through photography and educates young people about services that can help them through challenging times.

SafeSISTAS exists so that girls can come together and create stronger relationships with their friends and with female role models in the community. It also means that the girls become comfortable with service providers should they need to see them.

SafeSPACE™ has been operating for approximately six months at Kununurra PCYC, with PCYC staff, a Youth Police Officer, and two women from the Kimberley Mental Health Service, attending weekly sessions to help create relationships with the girls.

Once a week, the girls aged 12-15 are collected from school or home and taken out for an activity of the girls’ choosing. Sometimes they choose fishing, other times swimming, or to go to a place where the girls can cook and make things.

Recently, Sandra Guzzi from The Unframed Project took 13 of the girls out for the day with SLR cameras teaching them how to use and be responsible for them.

The girls went out to Mulligans Lagoon to take photos of the horses and the sheep and Sandra taught the girls about techniques such as contrast and colour.

When asked where they wanted to go, the girls chose Ivanhoe Crossing, a popular place they often go with their families. Nicky Duffy, PCYC Regional Manager (North) explained, “There’s great fishing there and lots of crocodiles so the girls took some photos down there and then they wanted to go to the lookout. At the end of the afternoon, the girls chose to go to the cemetery to take photos of the gravestones of their families.”

Nicky said “The photography project is great because it gives the girls a calm kind of focus. When they take photographs, they have to stop and look through the lens and think about what they’re doing.

“It’s really interesting to see and get their perspectives on life. Some of the photos the girls took are just outstanding and it was beautiful to see the way they see the world.”

A big thank you to Sandra Guzzi for delivering this wonderful project.

To find out more about the Unframed Project visit

The photography project is great because it gives the girls a calm kind of focus.
— Nicky Duffy, PCYC Regional Manager (North)