News and Blogs

For a digest of the latest news each month, subscribe to our bulletin by joining the Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance.

Blog

While great strides have been taken in research into participant experiences of Arts in Health, there has so far been very little exploration of practitioners’ perspectives (Naismith, 2019). This study will investigate the experiences of Arts in Health practitioners/ artists working in health, social care and participatory settings.
From Monday January 27 until Friday January 31 2020 professionals from Belgium, Canada, Israel, Hong Kong, Italy, United Kingdom, The Netherlands and Canada gathered at Great Museum North: Hancock in Newcastle for a unique training week on the deployment of cultural heritage for outreach activities with a focus on wellbeing. It was very intense and busy, but I am trying to summarize this week in a nutshell.
As many of you will have seen, Arts Council England has published its new strategy: Let's Create. Like the National Lottery Heritage Fund's strategic funding framework (published last year) it is full of references to health and wellbeing. This has not come from nowhere. The Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance would like to acknowledge the hard work of all our members and partners, and everyone else who took part in the ACE consultation process, whether they went to meetings or responded online, and made the case for considering health and wellbeing, as well as supporting the broader shift towards inclusive, participatory creative and cultural practice. All this has led to what Nicholas Serota refers to in his introduction as "the dissolving of barriers between artists and the audiences with whom they interact".

70 Stories

Image
Nigel Downing at the Spaces Between, Barnsley, June 2017
Charlotte Armitage, Creative Recovery
" Art allows us freedom". Nigel, a poet from Barnsley, shares his experience of using creativity and culture to navigate, soothe and understand his illness and recovery.
Image
Despair by Anthony Fisher Photography
Antony Fisher Photography
Tony Fisher is known as a determined, creative individual, (which we can second), who works across many art-forms; art, photography, poetry, film and socially engaged practice.
Image
Lynne Rawlings at Arts, etc
Lynne Rawlings
A poem by Lynne Rawlings with an introduction from Corina Harrison, WEA and Arts, etc

A Day in the Life

Image
A group of teenagers seated on the floor during a workshop run by Claire Newton
Photo by Rich Kenworthy
I do find when I work from home it’s easy to just keep going until you’re exhausted but I make sure I have breaks where I might just sit in the garden with a cup of tea for 5 minutes, do some yoga at lunchtime or go for a long walk at the end of the day to switch off.
Image
Picture of Sally Middleton
Sally Middleton
The experiences in libraries, as well as my training in social work, convinced me that culture and the arts could potentially help many more people than traditional social work. I am committed to gathering together even more of an evidence base to prove the link between well-being and participation in heritage and culture.
Image
Two children cooking at Norfolk libraries
Kiddy Cook event, Norfolk libraries
Part of my role is ...supporting libraries so they can deliver health and wellbeing activities, ranging from regular groups such as colour me calm, to one off activities like wellbeing days with the library smoothie bike!

International

From Monday January 27 until Friday January 31 2020 professionals from Belgium, Canada, Israel, Hong Kong, Italy, United Kingdom, The Netherlands and Canada gathered at Great Museum North: Hancock in Newcastle for a unique training week on the deployment of cultural heritage for outreach activities with a focus on wellbeing. It was very intense and busy, but I am trying to summarize this week in a nutshell.
Are you connected with the arts and/or culture in palliative care? Are you an artist, project lead, programme coordinator, or health professional who interacts with patients using the arts and/or culture in pal
Image
Picture of Museum Dr Guislain
VisitGent
Cultural Heritage for Mental Health will bring together experts from all over the world and different sectors for the second time in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent (Belgium) on 10 and 11 December 2020.

News

The Health Foundation and the Institute for Health Equity have launched their report Health Equity in England: The Marmot Review 10 Years On, showing that health inequalities are increasing. Culture remains largely absent from its the recommendations, although the report
While great strides have been taken in research into participant experiences of Arts in Health, there has so far been very little exploration of practitioners’ perspectives (Naismith, 2019). This study will investigate the experiences of Arts in Health practitioners/ artists working in health, social care and participatory settings.
From Monday January 27 until Friday January 31 2020 professionals from Belgium, Canada, Israel, Hong Kong, Italy, United Kingdom, The Netherlands and Canada gathered at Great Museum North: Hancock in Newcastle for a unique training week on the deployment of cultural heritage for outreach activities with a focus on wellbeing. It was very intense and busy, but I am trying to summarize this week in a nutshell.
As many of you will have seen, Arts Council England has published its new strategy: Let's Create. Like the National Lottery Heritage Fund's strategic funding framework (published last year) it is full of references to health and wellbeing. This has not come from nowhere. The Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance would like to acknowledge the hard work of all our members and partners, and everyone else who took part in the ACE consultation process, whether they went to meetings or responded online, and made the case for considering health and wellbeing, as well as supporting the broader shift towards inclusive, participatory creative and cultural practice. All this has led to what Nicholas Serota refers to in his introduction as "the dissolving of barriers between artists and the audiences with whom they interact".
Image
Hear and Now 2019 in Bedford, co-produced by Orchestras Live and the Philharmonia Orchestra © Beth Walsh
There is now substantial research and evidence, which shows that taking part in performing arts activity brings benefits for older people living longer. TV programmes such as the BBC’s Our Dementia Choir illustrate beautifully the power music can have in reducing the impact of symptoms such as depression and agitation, and in turn the isolation that those living with dementia feel. These improvements in quality of life can often be greater than any symptom control provided by drugs, which are hugely expensive to the NHS over the lifespan of an individual’s illness.
Image
"D-iagnosis", an image of two faces representing anguish after a dementia diagnosis, and the potential for engaging with the arts to create a more positive state of mind
“D-IAGNOSIS! Arts to Preserve Wellbeing” has been commissioned from artist Jane Frere by Arts 4 Dementia.
Image
A group of teenagers seated on the floor during a workshop run by Claire Newton
Photo by Rich Kenworthy
I do find when I work from home it’s easy to just keep going until you’re exhausted but I make sure I have breaks where I might just sit in the garden with a cup of tea for 5 minutes, do some yoga at lunchtime or go for a long walk at the end of the day to switch off.
Image
Heart painting by participants from Creative Potential CIC
Creative Potential CIC
The Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance in partnership with Derby City Council is looking to commission an East Midlands' artist to create artworks for the CHWA 2020 Awards
Image
Picture of Sally Middleton
Sally Middleton
The experiences in libraries, as well as my training in social work, convinced me that culture and the arts could potentially help many more people than traditional social work. I am committed to gathering together even more of an evidence base to prove the link between well-being and participation in heritage and culture.
In partnership with Arts Development at Derby City Council we are offering 10 free spaces to attend A Culture of Care to freelance creative practitioners and carers who live, or whose practice, is based in Derby.
Image
Art walk with Creative Recovery
Photo by Charlotte Armitage for Creative Recovery
The Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance is joining forces with the Network for Arts, Heritage and Design in Hospitals, Arts & Health South West, and London Arts & Health to be on the new Julie's Bicyle Acceler
Summary: This workshop will explore key principles and methodologies for evaluating arts for health and wellbeing programmes, examining the opportunities and challenges linked to embedding evaluation best practice appropriately, creatively and robustly.
Image
Two children cooking at Norfolk libraries
Kiddy Cook event, Norfolk libraries
Part of my role is ...supporting libraries so they can deliver health and wellbeing activities, ranging from regular groups such as colour me calm, to one off activities like wellbeing days with the library smoothie bike!
Image
a young man and an older woman laughing together
Live Music Now: LIBOR concerts 2017-18
by Alan Dix, Artistic Director 509 Arts This was originally a talk given by Alan at the Creative Arts and Dementia Conference, MAC Birmingham, on 24 September 2019. The featured image above is from Live Music Now's LIBOR concerts.
Are you connected with the arts and/or culture in palliative care? Are you an artist, project lead, programme coordinator, or health professional who interacts with patients using the arts and/or culture in pal
Please find responses linked below from: The Museums Association on all the parties' manifestos
Image
Picture of Museum Dr Guislain
VisitGent
Cultural Heritage for Mental Health will bring together experts from all over the world and different sectors for the second time in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent (Belgium) on 10 and 11 December 2020.
Image
A picture of a Parkinson's dance class, led by Pavillion Dance South West
Parkinson's dance class, Pavillion Dance South West
The Foundation has published two significant new resources for creative ageing: Around the World in 80 Creative Ageing Projects and
Image
one of Jennie's works of art: Home of the microbes  / Small Planet, children's drawings, vegatable papyrus, waxed paper and recycled perspex, by Jennie Pedley. Part of Art of the Gut residency at the Quadram Institute, supported by public funding from the Arts Council England and Norfolk County Council #artofthegut
Small Planet, children's drawings, vegatable papyrus, waxed paper and recycled perspex, by Jennie Pedley. Part of Art of the Gut residency at the Quadram Institute, supported by public funding from the Arts Council England and Norfolk County Council #artofthegut
My days are spent experimenting with visuals in the studio and exploring scientific/health research ... A few days each term I work as a physiotherapist at a school for Deaf children in London. I also support a young person in my family who recently developed a couple of autoimmune diseases.
Image
A portrait of Deborah Munt
Ellie Grace Photography
My work is very varied. I love devising...spotting gaps and devising responses...so I tend have one foot in practice and another in strategic development and advocacy, which of course always needs doing. As my friend likes to say...’the fight is real’.
Image
A portrait of Thanh Sinden
Ellie Grace Photography
As chair of Museum Detox, a network for BAME museum and heritage workers I am particularly interested in looking at wellbeing through building resilience especially for people with additional emotional labour through the intersectional identities they have.
Image
A portrait of Esme Ward
Ellie Grace Photography
Not sure a typical day exists, no two days are the same and that’s just how I like it! There is always a lot on - mix of supporting, mobilising and connecting with people and always the challenging of balancing inside the building and outside the museum work.
Deadline: 16 December 2019 A new National Social Prescribing Special Interest Group is calling for case studies focused on activity to support the early years and 1001 days agenda and/or new mothers. The case studies will be used to compile a national handbook for commissioners on how culture can promote wellbeing in these contexts.
Image
A portrait of Ben Pearce
Ellie Grace Photography
My work and career has always had an intersection between something creative and something broadly around delivering social policy outcomes – e.g. heritage and participation; the built environment and community-led regeneration; artistic learning, and of course more recently, the visual arts and wellbeing.
Image
A picture of Rosie Dow
Ellie Grace Photography
One day I will be setting out chairs and making tea in a hospital for a singing for breathing group, the next I’ll be at an NHS research committee approving a physio dance project, then I’ll be at Soho House meeting a potential donor for lunch. Then back to the chairs again.
Image
Lucy Suggate's swarm sculptures (sculptures made of people) for Yorkshire Dance, photo by Andy Wood
Yorkshire Dance: Lucy Suggate's Swarm Sculptures at Juncture 2016 ©AndyWood
For the last 18 months I have had the pleasure of working with the World Health Organisation on their developing agenda around arts and health. This month, we have released the largest evidence report ever published on arts and health.
Image
Cover of the WHO synthesis report
A new review of evidence has been published by the World Health Organization. The synthesis report, written by Daisy Fancourt and Saoirse Finn "aims to close this awareness gap by mapping the current available evidence in the field of arts and health." The report focuses largely on the WHO European Region and collates results from over 3,000 studies.
The Repository for Arts and Health Resources was originally created by Angus McLewin and Stephen Clift of the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health, on behalf of the RSPH Special Interest Group for Arts, Health and Wellbeing.
Image
Illustration of a dicsussion about climate change. Key ideas include degrowth and carbon literacy.
Tom Bailey (Arts & Minds Leeds)
The Leeds Arts Health and Wellbeing Network (LAHWN) hosted a vibrant and well-attended network event this October and generously offered us a workshop space to explore climate change with members of the network, following up on ideas generated by our
Image
A photo of some of the founding group: Vic McEwan, Claire Hooker, Karen Kerkhoven, Christine McMillan, Helen Zigmond, Ian Thomson, Michele Jersky, Christopher Smith.
Image: Some of the founding group. From left to right: Vic McEwan, Claire Hooker, Karen Kerkhoven, Christine McMillan, Helen Zigmond, Ian Thomson, Michele Jersky, Christopher Smith. A new Arts and Health Network has been launched for New South Wales in Australia.
Image
A trombonist plays for two schoolgirls
Nick Ewbank Associates were commissioned by Voluntary Arts to produce this review for BBC Music Day 2019. The paper includes discussions of the physiological benefits of music; music and empathy; and the value of music participation for both personal wellbeing and social cohesion. Key findings the paper highlights include
Image
Hold Exhibition at FACT Liverpool, by Invisible Flock, images Ed Waring
Hold Exhibition at FACT Liverpool, by Invisible Flock, images Ed Waring
"This is why we use technology and are constantly drawn back to it, by thinking of it in a malleable way, like a medium, it allows us to uncover new aesthetics and new ways to approach conversations and real world interactions."
Image
Kyunghee Kwon (program coordinator of the educational community development team at the South Korean Arts and Culture Education Service) with Frances Chiverton and Mitch Robertson at the Beaney
Beaney House of Art & Knowledge
Kyunghee Kwon, program coordinator of the educational community development team at the South Korean Arts and Culture Education Service (KACES), met the Health and Wellbeing team at the Beaney House of Art & Knowledge this September to learn more about their work.
Image
Astronomy: a section through the earth, showing the atmosphere. Engraving. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY
Astronomy: a section through the earth, showing the atmosphere. Engraving. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY
We're summarising here some of the discussions that took place during our first twitter chat – especially for those of you who are not on twitter (or you can find the chat on twitter here).
Image
Graphic illustration of some of the outcomes from the Arts Council's workshops by Zuhura Plummer
Arts Council England / Zuhura Plummer
The Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance's official response to the final draft of Arts Council England's strategy is attached here.
The following blog for our international pages is based on keynote remarks delivered at the inaugural
Image
People taking part in the Spaces Between Walk (Creative Recovery) with Barnsley Town Hall in the background
Spaces Between Walk (Creative Recovery); photo by Charlotte Armitage
A few things you need to know about Barnsley… We are a town born of industrious makers, grafters, rebels, campaigners and creatives. 
Image
Nigel Downing at the Spaces Between, Barnsley, June 2017
Charlotte Armitage, Creative Recovery
" Art allows us freedom". Nigel, a poet from Barnsley, shares his experience of using creativity and culture to navigate, soothe and understand his illness and recovery.
Power and Privilege in the 21st Century Museum was devloped through the Museums Association Transformers: Diversify programme. The report aims to provide practical tools for transforming museums.
Image
Photograph of Evelyn Wilson
It’s so important to raise our heads above the parapet when we can, to get a sense of things afresh. I do this is by going to talks or symposia on subjects I know little about but take a broader interest in. This for me can be enriching beyond words and I’m excited as today is one of those days.
Image
Kima: Noise by Analema Group @ Maxilla Space, 2019
KIMA: Noise by Analema Group, 2019
How do urban noises affect our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing? From 6-8 September a new participatory art project ‘KIMA: Noise’ will explore the effects of noise on well-being through an interactive installation at Maxilla Space, North Kensington.
Image
Ian Solomon- Kawall at May Project Gardens
Ian Solomon- Kawall, May Project Gardens
I have been doing this (May Project Gardens) for 12 years and I'm always inspired by the transformative nature of the work we do with people and organisations.
Image
Millions of people in the UK can have significant difficulty in accessing museums and other cultural venues
Morgan Salisbury, Meltdown Tracker
A blog by Morgan Salisbury You’re walking round a museum, and the noise in the entrance area echoes and makes you feel like you’re in a swimming pool of random noises, pain jutting at your ears. You turn your collar up and think about getting out the ear defenders buried at the bottom of your rucksack, then realise there’s no room to put your bag down to rummage.
Image
Brightly coloured sculpture - Land Sea Light Koan by Liliane Lijn
Land Sea Light Koan by Liliane Lijn
I write this short reflective piece as I retire from my role as manager of Healing Arts for the Isle of Wight NHS Trust at the end of August 2019, having arrived to work with the then Isle of Wight Health Authority in June 1986.
Produced in response to the growth of the youth climate strikes in the UK, this new guide from Kids in Museums is designed to help museums support youth climate activism and collaborate with young people on events, exhibitions and debates. It was produced in partnership with Climate Museum UK, the Happy Museum Project and Julie's Bicycle.
Image
Photo of two people shaking hands, with their hands covered in paint after an art workshop
Arts and Minds workshops in schools (Image courtesy of Sheila Ceccarelli)
The APPG for Arts, Health & Wellbeing, Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance and Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network have partnered to publish a briefing for Integrated Care System planning.
The Directors of Age of Creativity and the Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance have co-written a new article for Age UK's magazine, EngAGE. Read the article here (p.16)
The World Economic Forum journal has reported on Denmark's new 'culture vitamins' scheme to address depression:
Image
Rhiannon Armstrong
Image by Ben Gregory
The Slow GIF Movement seeks to make online space more inclusive with gently looping GIFs. Rhiannon Armstrong, supported by The Space and Unlimited, is pleased to announce the launch of The Slow GIF Movement on 15 August 2019, to coincide with National Relaxation Day.
Image
Pete Eliot directing a film
Pete Eliot
"Through the making of Instrumental Health, I interviewed so many inspiring people. It really was a massively important experience for me personally as I learnt more about myself and the mental health issues I’ve struggled with in silence for so many years."   What have you been doing today?
The National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance has published new guidance for artists and arts organisations interested in working in criminal justice settings, Enhancing arts and culture in criminal justice settings – a partnership approach.
The international conference on Storytelling and Well-being across Media Borders will be held at the University of Potsdam, Germany from 25-26 June 2020.
The Health Foundation has published an assessment of the Prevention Green Paper by David Finch.
The final regional dissemination events for Creative Health were held in Reading on 2nd May and in Ipswich on 16th May. You can watch the Reading event on YouTube and find out more about both in the APPG Annual Report (see below).
Image
Photo of two people shaking hands, with their hands covered in paint after an art workshop
Arts and Minds workshops in schools (Image courtesy of Sheila Ceccarelli)
"Fullscope" brings together seven organisations who support mental wellbeing in children and/or young people in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. Fullscope is a 3-year programme to improve provision, establish clearer opportunity pathways, and have national significance in influencing the sector as a whole. The Fullscope consortium is:
Image
photograph by Trish Thompson of the audience laughing at a Creative Arts East touring event during Creativity & Wellbeing Week 2019
Audience at Creative Arts East touring event. Photo: Trish Thompson
‘There is growing evidence that engagement in activities like dance, music, drama, painting and reading help ease our minds and heal our bodies. It is most encouraging to see just how much potential and ambition there is for joined up action on this vital work in Norfolk.’ Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England.
The APPG for Arts, Health & Wellbeing and Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance have produced new guidance for for STP and ICS Planning, available here.
Image
Community is everything! Barbara Bloomfield and Mary Everett (centre and right) lead a Growing Bolder group in Bristol for people over 55 who want to challenge isolation.
Barbara Bloomfield
" I’ve been a counsellor and counselling supervisor for 25 years and in the last decade I’ve moved much more into the world of expressive arts as i think creative expression is so helpful for wellbeing and resilience."
Image
Rebecca Hearne out on an archaeology trip
Rebecca Hearne
" My PhD is about using archaeology as a form of therapy for people who are living with trauma — I’ve seen first-hand how useful and life-changing it can be, and I can’t imagine myself doing anything else."
Please find attached the  Minutes of the meeting CHWA North East group consensus
The new Nordic Journal of Arts, Culture and Health is an open access journal - with its first issue scheduled for November 2019. The journal will provide a platform for publication and debate in the interdisciplinary field of arts and culture in healthcare and health promotion.
Image
cover of the new draft strategy for Arts Council England
We envisage a country transformed by its culture and at the same time, constantly transforming it: a truly creative nation in which we all can play our part. (Shaping the Next Ten Years: Draft strategy for consultation, p.6)
Image
Climate protests on Waterloo Bridge, April 2019
Climate protests on Waterloo Bridge, April 2019
We invite members' comments on our draft declaration and resources. Read more here
Image
Elaine Bedell, Chief Executive of the South Bank Centre, introduces the Creative Health conference
Elaine Bedell, Chief Executive of the South Bank Centre, introduces the Creative Health conference
Over 500 events later and Creativity & Wellbeing Week is officially a national festival...
Image
Catsou Roberts on a video screen as part of Julia Scher's project for Frieze
Catsou Roberts on a video screen as part of Julia Scher's project for Frieze
"...the life blood of what we do--the arts that we bring to Barts Health--propels me to visit artists’ studio as well as meetings with potential cultural partners. 
Image
A photograph of two people as part of a Singing in Care Homes project by Live Music Now and Creative Inspiration Shropshire Community Interest Company
Singing in Care Homes; Live Music Now and Creative Inspiration Shropshire Community Interest Company
We like big numbers here at BBC Music Day HQ. 14 million on radio. 13 million on TV. 1000 live music events across the UK. 100 external partners. 100 BBC production teams across TV, radio and digital. And we want to build on that this year – with your help.
Image
Snow Storm Steam Boat in Harbour
Joseph Mallord William Turner
'Look at Paintings', a free website which innovatively partners techniques of Mindful meditation with Art Appreciation, with the aim of producing immediate benefits to the viewer, has now gone live.
Image
James Dey performing
Flashpop Images
"I’ve always had an interest in how music can inspire, encourage, console and restore people."
Image
Creative Industries Federation logo
Creative Industries Federation logo
The Creative Industries Federation and Arts Council England have together launched a new report, Public Investment, Public Gain. The report makes case for the central role that public investment in arts and culture plays generating commercial returns across the economy.  
Image
Close up Photo of a person drawing on a table as part of Creative Health CIC’s Still Lively Programme (Celebrating Age, ACE/Baring Foundation)
Creative Health CIC’s Still Lively Programme (Celebrating Age, ACE/Baring Foundation), image by Ming De Nasty
Wednesday 26 June is National Writing Day, led by First Story - a national literacy charity, working with 55 partner organisations. #nationalwritingday
Image
A woman and young girl look at a display in the Life Zone Gallery at Thackray Medical Museum, Leeds
The Life Zone Gallery at Thackray Medical Museum, Leeds
The Art Fund's new Calm and Collected report has set out the ways in which museums could - and already do - impact our wellbeing. The report is based on a survey of over 2,500 adults in the UK, as well as a small number of in-depth interviews. It assesses rising levels of stress and anxiety across the UK, and the difficulties we have in creating space for ourselves.
A new £62 million fund has been announced by Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright. The fund will support heritage in high streets. The funding includes:
Image
Helen Stewart storytelling at Tatton Park
" My fellow Storyteller and I went into Manchester Children’s hospital to tell stories and were inspired by the courage of the children and dedication of the staff."
Image
Steven Skelley holding a tin from the Barnsley Canister Company
Barnsley Museums
" Museums do a huge amount of work in health and wellbeing; it is largely about reflecting and telling stories which has an incredibly powerful effect on people."
Image
Despair by Anthony Fisher Photography
Antony Fisher Photography
Tony Fisher is known as a determined, creative individual, (which we can second), who works across many art-forms; art, photography, poetry, film and socially engaged practice.
Image
Kavina Pound, a biodanza teacher
" I have been working as a Biodanza Teacher since 2011. Most of the work I do with people who are elderly or have disabilities and / or medical conditions."
Image
Tim Osborn
Tim Osborn
"It can be an amazing learning experience from so many perspectives."
Image
Messages left on the grass wall in 'Nature Calls' - the finale exhibition of Paintings in Hospitals 'Art in Large Doses' project - Photo by Glenn Michael Harper
Messages left on the grass wall in 'Nature Calls' - the finale exhibition of Paintings in Hospitals 'Art in Large Doses' project - Photo by Glenn Michael Harper
Friday 17 May, Newcastle Centre for Life
Image
Lynne Rawlings at Arts, etc
Lynne Rawlings
A poem by Lynne Rawlings with an introduction from Corina Harrison, WEA and Arts, etc
In January 2018, Perspectivesin Public Health published a Special Issue on Arts, Health & Wellbeing focusing on the content of presentations from the Culture, Health & Wellbeing International Conference held in Bristol in June, 2017.
Te Ora Auaha: Creative Wellbeing Alliance was launched launched in April 2019 by Carmel Sepuloni, New Zealand Minister of Social Development and Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage. Te Ora Auaha: Creative Wellbeing Alliance Aotearoa is made up of individuals, groups and organisations across the arts, health, youth, social and education sectors.
Creative Freedom has published a Manifesto for Mental Health in Arts Professional to address the difficulties of maintaining mental health in creative and cultural careers. Colin Beesting, founder of Creative Freedom, says
Image
Breathe Arts Health Research, Melodies for Mums 2018 - photo by Leigha Fearon
Breathe Arts Health Research, Melodies for Mums 2018 - photo by Leigha Fearon
A sincere thank you to everyone who filled out the Alliance's annual survey. You can find a summary report here. In total 99 people filled out the annual survey. We do not have permission to share comments publicly, so we have just included statistics here.
Responses to Arts Council England’s strategic proposals for 2020-2030 have been published by the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance, the National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance, and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Arts, Health and Wellbeing. A number of the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance’s partners are also signatories on its response.
Image
Logo for the Framing the Future event
Framing the Future, Paintings in Hospitals
What is the past, present and future role of arts in health? As part of Paintings in Hospitals' 60th anniversary celebrations, the organisation is convening a panel to consider the past pioneers and future innovations of visual arts in health and social care.
Image
Dancing from a hospital bed
Susie Tate projects, photo by Carrie Calvert
A new national network has been set up for anyone who takes responsibility for arts, heritage and design in hospitals. The group is being hosted by the NHS national performance advisory group and letters will be sent to all hospital arts managers in the UK and all NHS trusts for people to sign up.
Image
A drawing by Fabric Lenny from the Cultures of Health and Wellbeing conference
Fabric Lenny (made for the Cultures of Health and Wellbeing conference 21-22 March)2019
We are thrilled that over 3,600 of you have signed up to be members of the Alliance and receive this monthly bulletin. This is our first annual survey. To help us support you, please fill out this short survey, which covers general questions about the Alliance, its new website and the bulletin.
Image
Tin Arts performing at Cultures of Health & Wellbeing national conference
Tin Arts performing at Cultures of Health & Wellbeing (21-22 March 2019, Greant North Museum: Hancock)
The Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance's first annual conference ended with a bang - a whole load of bangs in fact - on 21 and 22nd March at Great North Museum: Hancock, with a performance from The Lawnmowers Beat This!
Image
Frances Chiverton at the Beaney Gallery & Museum
Frances Chiverton
"I started working at The Beaney 6 months ago as the Health and Wellbeing Coordinator. But, I would consider that I first started working in a role that involves working with culture, health and wellbeing when I became a Primary School teacher in 1998 - 21 years ago."
Image
Angela Awuah
Angela Awuah
“I saw no platform for young people with direct and indirect experience for mental illness, so I created one.”
Image
Nordict Arts and Health Research Network
Nordic Arts
Nordic Arts and Health Research Network hosts an Arts & Health conference on 21st May 2019 in Malmö, Sweden with focus on Arts & Health practice.
Image
A view of the outside of the Museum Dr. Guislain
Paul Hermans [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]
The Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent was on 29 and 30 November 2018 the meeting point for individuals from the public, academic, third sector and voluntary sectors who work on cultural heritage and wellbeing.
Image
Janet inspired by the Beaney collections to make figures
Wendy Daws
Sensing Culture This story shares how The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge are working together with partners and their local visually impaired community to enable more meaningful access to creative and cultural experiences to boost wellbeing, raise awareness and create a more inclusive space.
Image
A cartoon by David Shrigley with a person drinking culture
David Shrigley
Alex Coulter, Director of Arts & Health South West, continues to provide the secretariat and project management for the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health and Wellbeing (APPG), on behalf of the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance.
Image
A photo of some people walking towards Barnsley Station with art
Hayley Youell
"I started working within the field back in 2008, but it has always been central to thinking as a creative, linking with my innate curiosity about how the arts and culture, particularly music and singing, can transform peoples’ health and lives."
Image
A brightly-coloured abstract paiting called Celebrating Psychosis, by Kate Smith
'Celebrating Psychosis' by Kate Smith
Kate Smith is an award-winning children’s illustrator/designer and a workshop leader, who has a diagnosis of  ‘Acute and transient Psychotic Disorder’ which was triggered by stress and anxiety in 2005.  Kate was encouraged to make Christmas cards by an Occupational Therapist from the Early Intervention Service in Derbyshire as a coping strategy.
Image
Care To Dance participants
Photo by Michelle
A story by Michelle, sharing the reflections of her family on the role of dance in Rita, her mother’s life, both before and after her diagnosis with dementia.
Image
Creative Directions - Doncaster Community Arts
Doncaster Community Arts
Creative Directions darts (Doncaster Community Arts) submission of a story that represents personal experiences of the impact of creativity, culture and the arts on health and wellbeing.
Image
Painting by Naomi, called The Great Escape
Naomi
This story begins with an introduction from Naomi, who shares with us her experiences of being a full-time carer, Mum, nurse and painter and why now is the right time to share her story and her artwork.
Image
Richard celebrating after completing the Great North Run for James Cook Neuro- Rehabilitation Ward 26, Middlesborough ( South Tees Hospital NHS Trust)
South Tees Hospital NHS Trust
“The arts made me look forward, think, engage and stimulate and that had a wealth of benefits. I realised it was something to hold on to.”
Image
A digital drawing of a crouching figure by Shanali Perera
Shanali Perera
Excerpts from Beyond The Illness, Art n’ the Human experience by Shanali Perera, MBBS MRCP “The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance” ~ Aristotle
Image
Tin Arts performing at Cultures of Health & Wellbeing national conference
Tin Arts performing at Cultures of Health & Wellbeing (21-22 March 2019, Greant North Museum: Hancock)
I have been thinking about cooperation a lot lately. The Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance is a small organisation in terms of resource – but in terms of partnership and collaboration its reach is enormous. Over 3,000 people have now signed up as members, along with almost 70 partner organisations.
Image
An abstract painting by Lorna Collins
Lorna Collins
A story by Lorna Collins I have suffered from a number of psychiatric illnesses over the past eighteen years, following a serious Traumatic Brain Injury. I am now very much in recovery.
Image
Shrigley bird singing
David Shrigley, Sing Your Song
A story by Carole Fotheringham This is a story about how cultural activities are contributing to healing and enriching my life after a life threatening illness.  How it seems culture, friendship and laughter have the ability to cure all.
Image
A collection of drift wood ships by Dave Logan
Dave Logan
A story by Dave Logan, Chair of Parkinson’s UK – Swindon & District Branch, who has lived with Parkinson’s for sixteen years. I have had Parkinson’s for over 15 years and celebrated my 70th birthday this July.  I have been lucky in that the progressive nature of my Parkinson’s has been slow.  
This has been inspired by the work of the medical staff at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital – in particular, the ICU staff.
I spun a web and wrapped it round my life; fine spider silk: the type we’re taught to make. A sticky weave of working mum and wife; bespoke design – its cords would never break. High praise I netted in for such rich yarn; a gossamer of love cocooned my home, a strategist at work, a queen of charm;
Image
Power of the Object group meeting
The Beaney’s Power of the Object programme – a dementia & social isolation story   It’s been important to both me and my mum because it’s given Mum the opportunity to come out and do something constructive and it seems to me that she gets some kind of stimulation that lasts for 2 or 3 days afterwards.  Paul Langley,  Carer
Image
A green bra - a work of art called Unconventionally Beautiful by Jenni Burrows, photo by Mi Mi Media
Unconventionally Beautiful by Jenni Burrows, photo by Mi Mi Media
Photo: Unconventionally Beautiful, MI MI Media   A story by Jenni Burrows. You’ll Be Fine began as a form of ‘practical mindfulness’ in response to my diagnosis of a rare form of cancer-Primary Cutaneous CD30+ Anaplastic large Cell lymphoma(ALK-).
Image
Errol Francis speaks about the meanings of the word 'culture'
Errol Francis delivering his keynote at Cultures of Health and Wellbeing
The Alliance ‘s first annual conference, Cultures of Health and Wellbeing was held at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums in Newcastle on the 21st and 22nd March 2019.
Image
Shrigley bird singing
David Shrigley, Sing Your Song
London Arts in Health Forum and the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance are working together to expand Creativity and Wellbeing Week into a national event, building on its enormous success across London. Creativity and Wellbeing Week 2019 will run from 10-16 June 2019.
Image
Messages left on the grass wall in 'Nature Calls' - the finale exhibition of Paintings in Hospitals 'Art in Large Doses' project - Photo by Glenn Michael Harper
Messages left on the grass wall in 'Nature Calls' - the finale exhibition of Paintings in Hospitals 'Art in Large Doses' project - Photo by Glenn Michael Harper
The Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance is a national organisation representing everyone who believes that cultural engagement and participation can transform our health and wellbeing. We are developing a new statement of values and would like your help to answer the following questions:
Image
Lucy Suggate's swarm sculptures (sculptures made of people) for Yorkshire Dance, photo by Andy Wood
Yorkshire Dance: Lucy Suggate's Swarm Sculptures at Juncture 2016 ©AndyWood
Matt Hancock’s speech on 6 November – ‘The power of the arts and social activities to improve the nation’s health’ – is enormously significant.
Image
A brightly coloured Sand Mandala
Victoria Hume
The UN has told us that we have 12 years to sort out climate change. This is the largest health and wellbeing – and indeed cultural – challenge we face.