CITIZENS Advice Solihull Borough (CASB) has launched the ‘Tree of Reflection’, a community arts project designed to give local people the opportunity to express how the pandemic has affected their lives over the last 18 months.
The Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Ken Meeson, will be placing his own tribute on the tree in the Solihull Library Courtyard Gallery at 3pm on September 13, 2021.
The project is the brainchild of Sharon Gates who is one of the CASB social prescribing team.
CASB have been working with family doctors in Solihull to provide support and advice to people who have been isolated and lonely, especially during the lockdowns.
Sharon wanted to create a ‘Tree of Reflection’ – an interactive, thought-provoking and permanent reminder of how the community has come together to support each other throughout this devastating time.
She has worked with a local artist, Gareth Ross, to design the cherry blossom tree.
Local firm BR Engineering Ltd built the skeleton of the tree, and the team at CASB have been making hundreds of paper blossoms.
They are now building the tree and are asking members of the community to decorate wooden circles to reflect what they have experienced in the pandemic, what they have learnt and what their hopes for the future are.
There will also be wooden butterflies available for people to decorate if they have lost a loved one during the last 18 months.
The decorations will be hung on the tree and people will be able to visit the Library and see the artwork displayed from September 13 to September 27.
CASB chief executive Kerry Turner said: “Through our work we have seen how Covid-19 has impacted on the mental health of our community.
“We hope that the opportunity to express their feelings through a piece of art will help to start the healing process and recovery from the shared trauma of the pandemic.
“The ‘Tree of Reflection’ will give people a chance to express how Covid-19 has made them feel.”