Our stories

Art is helping Luka*, 14, work through his emotions

Luka*, 14, is in our SFK Mentoring program and finds going to school hard sometimes; he’s been bullied and has become withdrawn.


He’s faced a lot of hardship in his short life; his father was in custody, and his family have been through some very traumatic experiences.


Luka now lives with his grandfather and mother, who are loving but are facing their own struggles, so Luka feels he needs to grapple with a lot of regular teenage issues like forming his identity and growing up on his own.


He has trouble expressing his feelings but has really responded to having a mentor, someone ‘on his team’, who is not part of his family and is judgment-free. His family are quite traditional, and he comes from a small community, so having a trusted adult who isn’t part of his immediate network has made a big difference.


With the help of his mentor, Luka* is developing strategies for managing his emotions when other children upset him, and he’s also finding ways to express himself.


Luka says that when he’s drawing, he feels clear-headed, “I feel so free”.


One strategy that’s really taken off with Luka* is using art!


Seeing how well Luka responded to drawing and being creative, his mentor invested in some lovely new art gear for him. His family doesn’t have a lot of money, so having something new just for him is very special.


With a bit of encouragement from his mentor, who suggested he draw the ocean and look at the colours around him, Luka has delved into his art and has become quite talented!


He’s drawn beautiful sceneries of the natural world around him and says drawing helps him manage his frustration.


He told his mentor that art makes him feel clear-headed and that when he’s drawing, “I feel so free”. He’s even started taking his art gear to school so that he can use it when he needs to!


Luka* has flourished in the time he’s been in SFK Mentoring, and he says that it’s not only the one-on-one support but also the group activities he loves. He told his mentor that in his SFK Mentoring group of peers, he truly feels accepted.


We’re so pleased that Luka has found his passion and a group of friends to share it with.


*Names and images changed to protect the identity of children


Art is helping Luka*, 14, work through his emotions

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