Back to home

A community healing through art

A community healing through art
Photo credit: Donna Thibeault

Not all healing happens through health care. Sometimes what’s needed is more about healing the soul than the body.

That’s what happened last year in Grand Forks, a community struggling to overcome the devastation caused by flooding in 2018.

“The idea for the murals started out as part of an effort to bring back visitors to our community,” says Donna Thibeault, local resident.

B.C. artist Archer was commissioned to create airbrushed murals on the walls of several local businesses and landmarks. But as these beautiful images started showing up around the city, the community quickly realized they are gaining much more than a potential tourism opportunity. They are reviving a sense of hope and inspiration.

“After seeing several of these beautiful murals throughout Grand Forks, we decided to have one painted on the outside of our hospital auxiliary thrift shop,” says Willy Triveri, president of the Grand Forks Auxiliary to the Boundary District Hospital, which has donated more than $2.7 million since 2000.

From nostalgic scenes to angel wings, chess boards, and fishing, the murals offer some unexpected colour and Instagram worthy views.

“The theme of hands and heart was chosen because it has meaning for the work we do and the purpose of our auxiliary, which is providing comfort and aid to patients and their families,” says Willie.

Although the community continues to work at regaining what they lost in the flood, they have discovered that art is good medicine.