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Mission Champion: Frank Dunn on the ‘Arts of Living’ exhibition

Mission Champion Frank Dunn guitar

16 September 2019

Music lover Frank Dunn has been sharing his musical talents with residents at our Rooming House Plus Program (RHPP), where he has been teaching people how to sing and play guitar.

For the past four years Frank has been volunteering as part of the RHPP Social Inclusion Program, which aims to get residents involved in activities in the broader community.

frank dunn mission champion sacredheartmissionFrank says the studio is currently buzzing with anticipation as the residents prepare for their musical performance launching the ‘Arts of Living’ exhibition on Wednesday, 9 October.

“The ‘Arts of Living’ exhibition celebrates art and music through the stories of people who have experienced hardship, homelessness or mental illnesses,” Frank says.

“The residents are excited because it's a chance to show off their hard work, and it makes their talents the focus; instead of any hardship they may have experienced.”

The RHPP Social Inclusion Program caters for a variety of interests and activities for residents including art, music, health and education.

Frank, who co-facilitates an informal music group with fellow volunteers Greg and Shannon every Friday morning in the art room, says the studio can be full of wonderful surprises.

“I was recently blown away when one resident, who’d been coming to the studio for a while, brought an electric guitar with him and he turned out to be a very talented guitarist,” he says.

“He’s usually shy and it took quite a bit of encouragement from us to get him to play - and when he did, he was fantastic.”

The RHPP Social Inclusion Coordinator Gail-Marie Hart says research proves that art and music can provide healing for those suffering from illnesses or traumatic events.

“People who experience homelessness are more likely to be exposed to significant traumatic events, but creative therapies can help,” Gail-Marie says.

“I’ve seen it; music and art can be a real catalyst for change for people,” Frank adds.

“People really benefit from having something in their lives to focus on which means they can grow to feel good about other parts of their lives.”

The resident artists and performers at RHPP chose the exhibition's theme of the ‘Arts of Living’ to capture the many different expressions of life within the walls of RHPP.

The ‘Arts of Living’ Exhibition is open to the public from Wednesday, 9 October - Sunday, 27 October 2019 at Gasworks Arts Park in Albert Park.

arts of living exhibition sacredheartmission

Find out more about the Rooming House Plus Program

Sacred Heart Mission acknowledges the traditional Aboriginal owners of country throughout Victoria and pays respects to them, their culture and their elders past, present and emerging.


Sacred Heart Mission believes that the diversity of abilities, genders, sexualities, relationship identities, bodies and cultures in our community enriches us all and should be celebrated. Everyone is welcome at our table.