January 18, 2019 8:09 pm
Updated: January 18, 2019 8:12 pm

Alberta girl from Blood Reserve uses art as way to heal

WATCH ABOVE: A young girl from the Blood Reserve, who has faced several recent life challenges, is turning to art to connect with her culture and heal one painting at a time. Chris Chacon reports.


Six-year-old Galisa Healy, from the Blood Reserve near Lethbridge, has faced some tough challenges in her youth.

“Two years ago, she lost her father. She’s been through a lot. She’s a pretty strong girl,” Galisa’s mother Cynthia BigSwallow said.

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During the holidays, she got pneumonia and was airlifted to a hospital in Calgary where she almost lost her life. After receiving treatment, she recovered and was able to get back to doing what she loves most.

“She made pictures to kind of heal herself, to heal people around her,” her great-grandmother Linda Healy said.

“I think that art has really helped her cope.”

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Recently Galisa had the opportunity to take part in an afternoon of drawing and colouring at the Lethbridge library with an experienced artist who not only shared his talents of drawing, but also encouraged artists to tap into their own culture.

“The importance of passing on Indigenous… to keeping evidences of our culture alive and the spirit that still exists in us,” art Instructor Mark Braverock said.

It’s that spirit that has those close to the young artist so passionate about her work.

“Her art is inspirational to me because now I want to make stuff too,” her great-grandmother said.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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