There's something so special about being a part of a community. The unique sense of belonging and comfort that a friendly neighbour, or a group of likeminded people can bring, is something to be treasured. This Spring, a beautiful member of the Byron Bay community took to the beach with seven painted rainbows and seven baskets full of positive messages to create the "Chasing Rainbows Walk" - a fun family project, turned art installation and community initiative created without any motive but an urge to give back and desire to bring people together. This is Yvonn Deitch's story:
When we moved from our old home, my eldest daughter missed the view and spotting rainbows from her window. We once secretly hid a small treasure in the spot where we believed the rainbow might have touched the ground - something she still talks about years later. So when we finished building our family home closer to town, we used a leftover piece of marine ply to make a rainbow for our backyard.
One day, to escape the routine of things, we took the rainbow to the beach. We blindfolded the kids, spun them around and let them find the rainbow, where we had hidden a tiny chocolate coin underneath. After a swim, we built a sand castle and observed people stopping, smiling, chatting and taking pictures. This simple rainbow, painted just in three colours, surprised people and opened up conversations between strangers.
This is what inspired the idea behind Chasing Rainbows. I imagined placing the rainbows along the beach and attaching messages of positivity to each one. I saw children running from rainbow to rainbow on a sunny day, taking a message, putting it in their pocket and remembering the feeling of the sea, the wind and the sand underneath their feet.
The rainbows spent one whole day on the beach, from dawn till dusk, and afterwards were donated to public schools in the Byron Shire area for use in school veggie gardens or sandpits. This little family project has brought us and our friends so much joy and I hope that the rainbows and messages have made a tiny change, which will hopefully create a positive ripple effect in the community - encouraging acts of kindness in a fun way.