Arts for Health & Wellbeing
In September 2022, Wandsworth Council called out for local arts and cultural organisations to apply for a new funding opportunity, designed to support creative activity focused on health and wellbeing in the borough. Wandsworth Council are currently supporting nine organisations to deliver creative health & wellbeing programmes across the borough, between January 2023 and June 2024.
Wandsworth’s Arts for Health & Wellbeing programme adds a new cultural offer to the award-winning Social Prescribing programme already operating in the borough, and is delivered in partnership with Enable and South West London Integrated Care System.
In order to support the development of the Creative Health sector in the borough, Wandsworth Council is working to develop a Community of Creative Health Practice through regular training, sharing and networking opportunities.
L-Abe, Laboratory for Art, Wellbeing and Education
The research laboratory L-ABE (Art, Wellbeing and Education) is made up of specialists in the field of art therapy, artistic mediation and creation. L-ABE organises weekly workshop-visits for the general public and specific or special groups, from a participatory, self-reflexive and art-therapeutic approach.
L-ABE proposes participatory activities where the group will end up developing a creative work,
reflecting on everyday disobediences, small but perceptible resistances that, little by little, undermine a
little by little undermine a hegemonic system.
The methodology based on art therapy proposes the approach to artistic objects from the connection, intercorporality, experience, projection, symbolisation and taking into consideration the union of perception-cognition-emotion. In this methodology, the creative process becomes a means of knowledge and introspection, at the same time as it brings out the link with others and one's own life project. The artistic object simultaneously embodies the transitional object that allows the connection of the being with the environment and culture. With this approach, each visit-workshop becomes a space of thought-action-emotion-transformation. of joint thought-action-emotion-transformation. In addition, the methodology of the sessions has been based on experiential education, given that we consider that the most valuable seed for generating meaningful learning is in the personal experiences that occur largely through the senses and emotion, together with memory and cognitive capacity. For this reason, the dialogued visits and the art therapy workshops have been the body-mind relationship of the people, favouring dialogue and group reflection so that they can give a personal and social meaning to what they experience in each part of the visit-workshop, discovering information about the works, in order to enrich the experience. The work of art thus becomes a dialectical element that opens up to its knowledge from the creative person -his or her space and time of creation-, but also from the space-time in which the work is perceived, the space-time of the visitors and their own narrative. The work acts as a germ of meaning open to interpretation in the exhibition device, generating new experiences for visitors.
L-ABE is a free activity offered to all audiences, from 6 to 106 years old, on Sundays, and during the week it is offered to groups on demand. These groups include children and adolescents in therapeutic day centres, homeless people, people in prison, victims of gender violence, health workers, among many others. LABE previously agrees objectives and procedures with the intervention team.
Arts and Mental Health Festival
Greek Carers Network Epioni in collaboration with the Municipality of Aegina and the Aegina Health Centre successfully organised the first multi-thematic festival entitled “Art and Mental Health” on the beautiful island of Aegina with free participation.
The festival contributed to raising public awareness of mental health issues and promoted the use of art as a therapeutic tool. Participants from Greece and abroad had the opportunity to attend sessions on visual art, music, and theatre and speeches from notable participants
The Festival took place in the framework of European Mental Health Week (22-28 May 2023) and was held under the auspices of the Region of Attica and the Hellenic Psychiatric Association.
This community action aimed to inform and educate the local community of Aegina on issues related to mental health. The focus was on art, which is a lever of expression for people facing mental health problems.
The Arts & Mental Health festival was attended by citizens, artists, mental health professionals from Greece and abroad, people with mental health problems and family carers.
The festival in Aegina provided an opportunity for stakeholders from Aegina, Athens and abroad to meet, exchange views, share experiences and inspire each other about the use of art in mental health.
The festival was held at the Aegina Historical and Folklore Museum.
The Festival had a European dimension as it was held in collaboration with mental health organisations from Belgium, Denmark, Portugal, Croatia, Italy and Denmark.
The “Arts and Mental Health” festival hosted workshops, talks, theatre performances by people with mental health problems, visual arts, photography and contemporary music performances from Aegina. The participating institutions were: PEPSAEE, Workshop, SOPSY Korydallos, EDRA, P.Sakellaropoulos Society of Social Psychiatry, obrela, Hellenic Alzheimer’s Society, Saronic Nephrological Center , EUFAMI and ANTAMA KOIN.S.EP
The two-day multidisciplinary festival was co-funded by the EU.
Care: Economies of Eudaimonia
A week-long research residency program, a collective learning and caring experience, a call for creative people whose work is based on research, experimentation, and collaborations. Recently inaugurated (October 2022), it took place in Crete, and brought together nine cultural practitioners from different fields (curators, artist-performers, writers, historians, place makers, researchers, cultural managers) as well as 6 speakers-workshop leaders (university professors, researchers, architects, performers, writers), all of whom have studied, in different and various ways, the topic of care. Starting with the “Care Manifesto” by the Care Collective, over the course of eight days, during workshops, presentations, and debates, we discussed community-led co-creative projects, case studies and empirical studies on the social organization of care in Greece within broader interdisciplinary approaches, the crisis of social care and healthcare in Greece and abroad, the gradual shrinking of the welfare state, the refugee crisis, the pandemic, and the environmental crisis, as well as the secondary traumas of carers, the lack of (their) care, and ‘care washing’.
The MuseIT project aims to co-design and develop an inclusive multisensory platform with interactive technologies for people with disabilities to have enriched engagement with cultural assets and experiences. The technologies we will develop are namely: a toolkit of multi-sensory technologies including Virtual Reality for cultural immersive experiences and a remote musical co-creation platform. With these technologies, we want to widen access to cultural experiences and cultural heritage for people with disabilities. Beyond the development of technologies, the MuseIT partners will develop methodologies for transfer, capacity-building and awareness-raising, addressed to cultural organisations, policymakers and civil society, with the aim of supporting the change of narratives on disability.
Inclusion of Art in business and companies
This project was implemented by Društvo Asocaicija in Slovenia. Local partners: Ravnikar Gallery Space, Radio Študent, Lokal Patriot, Zavod Sploh, City of Women, Nomad Dance Academy, Forum Ljubljana, Glej Theatre, Emanat. Supported by: Ministry of Public Administration.
The purpose of the project has been to alleviate symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression, physical pain, and conflicts in the workplace.
The project aimed to strengthen the health and well-being of workers, reducing absenteeism, the need for medicalization, increasing motivation, well-being, mental health, confidence, understanding of self and others, and capacity for self-reflection.
One of the goals of the project was to create guidelines for decision-makers on how to broaden the scope of such cooperation and further develop the field, with the ultimate goal of better understanding the potential of connecting art and business through a specific correlation to well-being in the workplace.
- promote the inclusion of art in businesses and companies in order to improve the well-being of employees in their working age, early adulthood and midlife
- reduce stress, anxiety, depression symptoms, physical pain, and improve conflict resolution, while increasing motivation, well-being, mental health, confidence, understanding of self and others, and developing a capacity for self-reflection among employees
- test three models of including art in companies to increase the well-being of employees and gather data that will answer questions such as whether companies find such inclusion of art beneficial
- collect evidence on the potential of art to contribute to the well-being of employees based on proposed experimental models of including art into businesses
- create guidelines for further studies and decision makers on how to broaden the scope of cooperation between art and business, and further develop the field
- strengthen the sustainability of an independent certificate system for including arts into businesses
The pilot project involved 23 employees from three different companies who took part in a three-part program of diverse cultural activities, including art installations and interventions in the workplace, contemporary dance workshops, and creative collaborative residencies.
The project was involving complex preparation, including a detailed design of the intervention and evaluation protocol, consultation on the project design with public health experts, artists, psychologists, HR department heads, and employees, as well as conversations and cooperation meetings with local stakeholders such as representatives of general physicians, private and public health institutions, manager associations, labor unions, and cultural organizations.
Malopolska. Empathetic Culture
It is a project that has become a regular programme. It has been conducted since 2016 when it started as a dedicated project for improving accessibility of 23 regional cultural institutions in Malopolska, Poland. By inviting non-governmental organisations, it has developed a model of improving accessibility of any public space, including culture sector. However, it moved its focus from the needs of people with disabilities and highlighted that we shall be open to diverse and various needs of people visiting our institutions. Moreover, it emphasized that accessibility will not be successful if we won't let others create those cultural spaces together with us. It provides then not only practical solutions, but inspires cultural, social and educational policies, both at political, but also at strategic level.
DigitalHealthEdu: Digital technologies for healthy lifestyles?
This project focuses on digital health promotion, understood as those messages and initiatives that encourage the adoption of healthy lifestyles (physical activity, diet, psychological well-being, etc.) through digital technologies (websites, apps, social networks, or self-monitoring devices). The main hypothesis is that these digital technologies play a fundamental pedagogical role in how young people learn about and understand their bodies, health, fitness and well-being. Specifically, they promote normative gendered body ideals and norms, neoliberal notions of the self and discourses of health consumption, which generate risks and inequalities. In addition, it is worrying that these public or informal pedagogies often come into tension with the health-related learnings provided by formal education.
The final goal of this project responds to the urgent need to understand and address how school education could help young people to successfully navigate through this complex landscape of digital health promotion. To this end, the purpose of this project will be to co-develop with young people innovative and critical pedagogical ideas about digital health technologies in schools, informed by a deep understanding of the meanings, contexts and social factors that shape Spanish young peoples relation with digital health promotion.
The project has three objectives:
1) To co-research with young people of diverse social profiles about the role of digital technologies for healthy lifestyles on their lives, exploring the impact over their health, health behaviours and identities as well as the affects, relations and learnings that emerge;
2) To co-create with young people critical digital health pedagogies aimed at challenging normative meanings and affects on health, health behaviours and identities;
3) To design an educational proposal aimed at the critical digital health education of young people.
The research design will be participatory, multi-method, iterative and multi-site, with the development of fieldwork in two Autonomous Communities, selected by their different socio-demographic characteristics: Madrid (urban) and Galicia (rural). It will consist of the following Research Stages:
1) Survey of a representative sample of young people to map their uses of these technologies;
2) Digital diaries, as participatory visual methods to delve into the meanings and impact of these technologies;
3) Co-creation workshops through participatory creative methodologies for the development of critical digital health pedagogies.
Additionally, a transversal stage of Participatory Action Research will be developed with young people who will collaborate closely with the research team. This project involves the design of an audiovisual educational proposal aimed at critical education on digital health promotion. The project plans to have an impact on young people and educational agents, as well as policy makers in the areas of Education and Health Promotion.
We have a date with art
The pilot program "Tenemos cita con el Arte", made by art educators from the Complutense University with people affected with Alzheimer and other dementias and their caregivers. In this program the organisers have developed a series of visits to the Prado Museum and the National Museum Art Center Reina Sofía as well as workshops of artistic creation related to these visits. The aim of this project is to create some protocols of visits and workshops that can work as reference to artists, educators and other professionals.
Graphic recordings for well-being and community health
A graphic recording is an image used to represent and/or analyse phenomena or events. They are produced from the representation of subjectivities, meetings, and interactions of collective action, aiming to reflect on contextualised flows and synergies. Through the Madrid Salud (2021) project Art and Health, graphic recordings have been developed after three online meetings: 1) the “Broken Hugs” project, 2) the World Mental Health Day meeting, and 3) the “Building Compassionate Communities” meeting. Graphic recordings in this context can reinforce a sense of community and make bonds between participants visible, especially since the pandemic forced the transfer of most meetings from in-person to online mode.
This project aims to expand on the key concepts presented in previous studies on this subject, analysing how these visual strategies expand their potential for a post-COVID art mediation, and identifying broadened characteristics in our remotely created productions that expand the graphic recordings possibilities in an artistic mediation and community health context.
The mapping is an ongoing process, please make use of the 'Share Your Project' feature of this website to add new initiatives. Click *HERE* to find the 'Share Your Project' feature.
If you would like to make changes to a project or initiative already included in the database, please contact us at email@example.com