Our key community arts education program, Refill at Miller Technology High School, has earned some high industry praise in the week when the students’ first films have been released online.

A news story on the Arts NSW website has concluded: “if there’s a shining example of how the public and private sectors can work together, then ReFill is it”.

The initiative is a partnership between CuriousWorks, the school and the Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre who share the vision of delivering a dynamic, multi-arts program for young people in the community of Miller, including an exchange with Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art. The long-term project has financial backing from the Crown Resorts Foundation, as part of their Western Sydney Arts Initiative, with Arts NSW coming on board from next year with additional program funding. There is also support from the Nelson Meers Foundation, who fund the CuriousWorks Community Director position that coordinates this and our other grassroots programs.

That team effort is starting to produce some very creative results after just a few months. Today, we’ve released the first three films from a group of Year 7 students on the Refill web page. We think these young artists have made a great debut, grasping not only technical aspects but also an understanding of how to construct film stories.

The Arts NSW story highlights other benefits. “These workshops help participants learn new creative skills, teamwork and positive ways of communication. The workshops also aim to celebrate different cultural backgrounds, showcase positive role models and encourage interaction across the year groups.”

The films are the first output from creative workshops that our artists and mentors will be running over two years at the school. Students will be introduced to writing, recording and producing music, performance and drama, video-making, new media technologies and traditional visual arts.

The current ReFill is the second generation of the project that began for us in 2008. Click here to read more about its history and where it is heading.