Towamba Fireflies' display gratitude to Fire and Rescue crew

Towamba Primary School teacher Nicci Grant and arts facilitator Vicki McCredie with the Towamba Fireflies and their works of art.
Towamba Primary School teacher Nicci Grant and arts facilitator Vicki McCredie with the Towamba Fireflies and their works of art.

The Fireflies of Towamba Public School are exhibiting their striking artworks at the Country Women's Association (CWA) in Eden.

Created with local artist Vicki McCredie in response to the impact of the Black Summer bushfires on the environment surrounding the locality of Towamba, the exhibition was originally displayed at Wild Rye's in Pambula in April.

Members of Fire and Rescue NSW Station 286 Eden attended the opening in Eden on Friday, July 10, and gratefully received four large prints of artworks from the children to display at the fire station which Station Commander Nemec described as a "wonderful gesture".

"The paintings tell a story of the fires burning around them with the devastation the fires have caused," he said.

Three Fireflies with Station Commander Nemec from Fire and Rescue NSW's Eden station.

Three Fireflies with Station Commander Nemec from Fire and Rescue NSW's Eden station.

"Looking at the paintings it was quite obvious that the fires had an effect on the young painters, but in the paintings there were a lot of bright colours showing regeneration of the bush and surrounding areas."

Ms McCredie has worked closely with the children on The Fireflies Project since late January and said "the essence behind the journey of this exhibition is love".

She said the response so far had been fabulous with lots of local attention and some very emotional reactions to the artworks.

"Some people don't understand that children can create something of such exquisite beauty - these aren't scribbles on cardboard, these are works of art," she said.

"The children responded to their environment lovingly, understanding about regrowth.

"We don't talk about recovery as such, we want to renew, rejuvenate, we want to so something different to before.

"The creative responses of the children are free and open, coming straight from their little hearts - when you view the artworks you receive that vibration," Ms McCredie said.

'The Bend in the Snake Track', a large collaborative piece for sale, with money raised to go towards school and community projects.

'The Bend in the Snake Track', a large collaborative piece for sale, with money raised to go towards school and community projects.

Four of the large collaborative paintings are up for sale via expressions of interest and card packs can be purchased via order, contact towambafireflies@outlook.com.

Part of the rationale for the grant the school received from Coordinaire, South Eastern NSW Primary Health Network, was to complete the project is that the children learn about giving back to the broader community; some portion of funds raised will be contributed to a community need or project at a later date, with the rest going to Towamba Public School P&C.

Bega Valley Regional Gallery is hosting a virtual gallery of the exhibition and the current display at Eden CWA can be viewed on Friday, July 17 and Saturday, July 18 between 10.30am-3.30pm.

Fire and Rescue NSW crew show the Towamba Fireflies the firetruck and equipment.

Fire and Rescue NSW crew show the Towamba Fireflies the firetruck and equipment.