Along with Acadia University, CMHA and the RBC Foundation, Valley Regional Hospital Foundation is a proud supporter of Light in the Forest. Click the link below to give to this important mental wellness project and read more from local artist Holly Carr, as she tells us how she created Light in the Forest.


“I originally created Light in the Forest as an art installation for Acadia University Art Gallery. I used the experience to explore my then young son’s anxiety and my own childhood fears, taking us into the dark, ultimately finding our way back to the light using the forest and its inhabitants as a metaphor for facing and overcoming fear.

Years later I revisited and reimagined Light in the Forest after the heart breaking multiple tragic events involving young people from our community. The idea was to shine a light on mental wellness through a theatrical experience filled with the message of hope and resilience. In 2019, pre-COVID we launched the first Light in the Forest multimedia experience in Halifax. Who could have imagined what the world had in store for us? The message I had hoped to share was now even more important than ever. Light in the Forest is the intersection of art, nature and mental Wellness.

The project has evolved over the last few years, it is now a mental wellness virtual world being piloted at Acadia University, an award-winning children’s book, an App in development, an educational program in development, multimedia live art presentation and now a new multimedia presentation of my art work animated by Jack Bateman, who was the original inspiration for Light in the Forest.

The latest iteration will be launched in April with the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra performing the new LITF original score composed by Christopher Palmer and the NS Honour Choir with Heather Fraser at the helm performing the Light in the Forest song I wrote for the production. As a child I was inspired by Mr. Dress Up, his sweet natured way of sharing stories ,art and music was always a soft place for me to land. I hope Light in the Forest is a soft place to land for people of all ages. We all go through dark times in our lives, the challenge is finding our way back into the light. Sometimes even the memory of experiencing the light can be enough to help you through the dark. There is Light in the Forest and you are not alone.”

~ Holly Carr, creator, director, educator, artist and designer of the Light in the Forest Mental Wellness Project