State Senator Troy Balderson (R-Zanesville) this week announced the release of state capital funds approved for the purchase and renovation of a new facility for the Athens Photographic Project, which provides therapeutic opportunities for individuals living with mental illness in southeast Ohio.

"Our friends and neighbors living with mental illness are finding new ways to overcome struggles through creative expression thanks to this unique combination of the arts and mental health therapy," said Balderson.

On Monday, the Ohio Controlling Board released a grant in the amount of $175,000 to the project for the purchase and renovation of their facility which will serve residents from Hocking, Vinton and Athens counties. Funding for the project was included as part of the state's capital budget, approved by the Ohio General Assembly earlier this year.

In collaboration with community partners consisting of the arts, mental health and Ohio University, the Athens Photographic Project provides opportunities for individuals living with mental illness to engage in discovery and self-expression through photography.

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