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Arts & Health Month

Arts & Health Month November 15

Arts & Health Month is an opportunity for organisations and individuals worldwide to promote the integration of the arts into a wide variety of healthcare and community settings for therapeutic, educational, research, social and expressive purposes.

This November, join the movement celebrating the positive impact the arts have on the health, healing and wellbeing of individuals and communities. Let's use our collective voice to advance Arts & Health and show the world the benefits of approaching health creatively!

Get Involved

#ArtsHealthMonth

Add the #artshealthmonth hashtag to your social media posts throughout the month of November, to increase international recognition and support for the valuable contributions of the arts to health.

Logo

The 2016 Arts & Health Month logo is available for use by any organisation in efforts to increase recognition and uptake of arts & health activity worldwide.

Download the logo as a PDF file:
Arts & Health Month 2016 - Landscape
Arts & Health Month 2016 - Portrait A
Arts & Health Month 2016 - Portrait B

History

In November 2010, the former Society for the Arts in Healthcare in the US launched “Arts & Health Month”, supported by other regions, such as Canada, UK and Australia. This initiative was designed to celebrate and add momentum to the international field of arts and health. In the summer of 2015, an informal group of international arts & health leaders and stakeholders connected by email and a conference call to discuss future Arts & Health Month collaborations. To join this conversation for future years, please email Arts Health Network Canada

Look who's talking!

Arts & Health Month is recognised by the following organisations worldwide:

Arts Health Network Canada

"Arts Health Network Canada is pleased to celebrate Arts & Health Month and join the international effort to raise awareness about the arts’ contributions to health, healing and wellbeing!"
Kira Tozer, Project Manager, Arts Health Network Canada.

Email  |   Website  |   Twitter  |   Facebook



Australian Centre for Arts and Health

"When Arts & Health Month was first introduced in November 2010, we were very supportive, particularly given that we host an international arts and health conference in Australia each November. Now Arts & Health Month is being re-energised by colleagues in the field around the world. Congratulations to Arts Health Network Canada for leading the way.”
Margret Meagher, Executive Director, The Australian Centre for Arts and Health

Email  |   Website  |   Twitter  |   Linkedin



Manchester Metropolitan University

"We have a real place in 21st century healthcare, but more than simply ameliorating against ill health, through our long-term participation in the arts in all their guises, we are part of a much wider cultural and public health shift, across the life-course, and potentially affecting positive generational change. The evidence is out there and our time is now. Let’s influence decision makers, create challenging work, and realise that we are part of something far bigger than our individual selves."   Read further...
Clive Parkinson, Arts for Health, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK

Arts For Health  |   Blog  



Arts & Health South West

"Arts & Health South West is an information, support and advocacy organisation for everyone who believes in the value of creativity in enhancing health and wellbeing. This year's annual conference takes place on 17 November 2015 at Buckfast Abbey in Devon, UK.
Alex Coulter, Director, Arts & Health South West, UK

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Cambridge Community Arts

"CCA uses the creative process as a tool to empower individuals by tapping into their own creative resources and improving their mental well-being. This results in stronger and more successful people, communities and workforces. We work with talented artists, musicians, producers, directors, actors, film-makers , photographers, poets, story-tellers… experienced at delivering creative learning and inspiring others. Join us and release your inner artist!"
Emily Bradfield, Community Learning Manager, Cambridge Community Arts, UK

Website  |   Twitter  |   Facebook



Live Music Now

"We are delighted to support Arts & Health Month. Since 1977, LMN has been enabling musicians to work in a wide range of healthcare settings, such as hospitals and care homes; as well as in special schools and community settings. We work throughout the UK, and with partners around the world. This month, together with the Royal Society of Medicine, we are leading a conference to present the latest evidence for music interventions for older people, particularly those living with longer-term neurological disorders. Speakers include Professor Stephen Clift and many others. Please do join us."
Evan Dawson, Executive Director, Live Music Now, UK

Website  |   Twitter  |   Facebook  |   Vimeo  |   Donate



Creature Tales

"What a great initiative to support in celebrating the global arts and health momentum to be mainstream and visible, collectively demonstrating what is possible in influencing key decision makers through our interventions and actions. See you in Sydney this November for the next International Arts and Health Conference."
Chris Mead, Artistic Director, Creature Tales, Tasmania, Australia

Website  |   Facebook



The Association for the Wellbeing of Children in Healthcare

"The Association for the Wellbeing of Children in Healthcare (AWCH) supports Arts in Health Month November 2015. AWCH works to ensure that the emotional and social needs of children, adolescents and their families are recognised and met within hospitals and the health care system in Australia. Hospitalisation can be very traumatic for the child with possible far reaching implications for the future. AWCH encourages the use of the creative arts as a way of helping children and young people cope with illness, hospitalisation and pain. The mastery over fear and anxiety that the creative arts can bring can contribute to facilitating a sense of control for a child or young person experiencing hospitalisation."
Anne Cutler, Program Manager, The Association for the Wellbeing of Children in Healthcare, Australia

Website

Waterford Healing Arts Trust

"Healing Arts Trust (WHAT) welcomes Arts & Health Month as a means of developing a shared global identity and promoting solidarity among practitioners of arts and health that is based on values of inclusiveness, compassion and creativity.

WHAT is Ireland’s leading arts and health programme. Established in 1993, we bring arts experiences to the bedsides of patients at University Hospital Waterford and other healthcare settings. We believe that the arts contribute to the wellbeing and vitality of society and that engaging with the arts stimulates our sense of identity and creativity. WHAT supports the development of arts and health in Ireland and manages www.artsandhealth.ie, a national website. WHAT and artsandhealth.ie will partner with Create and Dublin City Council’s The LAB on hosting the first Arts and Health Check Up, Check In, a gathering of arts and health practitioners in Dublin in January 2016. Arts and Health Check Up, Check In will take the pulse of arts and health in Ireland and explore the notion of a shared manifesto for this field of practice."
Mary Grehan, Director, Waterford Healing Arts Trust

Website  |   Facebook  |   Twitter

Note: To add your logo and statement of support to this list, please email: Arts & Health Month Supporter

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Posted by Administrator on Tue, 27 Oct 2015

Tributes to Mike White

Mike White

Vale Mike White - A World Leader in Arts and Community Health

We are sad to announce the passing of Mike White on 5 June in Durham. Mike was a luminary in the arts and health field and I considered him the world’s best in the area of arts and community health. His book "Arts Development in Community Health: a social tonic" (Radcliffe 2009) will remain a major piece of writing, continuing to inspire and inform those working in the field. I was privileged to spend several days in Durham with Mike in early June and he spoke fondly of his times in Australia and the raft of friends he had made, especially while visiting for our annual arts and health conferences. Our love and prayers are with his wife Catherine, son Jonah and daughter Ellie.

Margret Meagher
Director, The Australian Centre for Arts and Health

The following tributes from Clive Parkinson, Francois Matarasso, Naj Wikoff and Chris Mead tell much of the story of Mike White’s success as a compassionate, caring, gentle person, who possessed a sparkling intelligence, a mischievous sense of humour and an inspiring ability to write with impassioned eloquence. I have often publicly stated that, in my opinion, Mike White was the world leader in arts and community health. He was a mentor and dear, trusted friend to me and many others. If you would like to contribute your words about Mike for this page, please email Margret Meagher

For now, here is part of Mike White’s story.

A Tribute to Mike White from Clive Parkinson (UK)

Originally published here.

Friday, 5 June 2015   Mike White died yesterday. 

Mike had cancer and talked very openly about his experiences and treatment over this last year, and until the last few weeks, had kept a blog which shared some of his reflections and the gritty realities of living with cancer. If you haven’t read it, it’s compelling stuff.

I first met Mike when I worked for the NHS in Public Mental Health and was looking for ways to strategically embed the arts in my work across North Lancashire and Cumbria. I’d heard about him on the grapevine and was thrilled when he agreed to be part of a steering group, that I sat on, that was planning an arts and health conference in Carlisle in 2001. It seemed we were very different creatures, me all nervy and on the brink of histrionics and Mike - well - consistently calm, considered and so, so gentle. The conference was sold out and he was a great hit. Having been closely involved in the recent planning and completion of the Angel of the North in Gateshead, Mike had a certain mainstream arts cachet too!

Our second meeting was over in Dublin in 2004 shortly after I’d left the South West, where I’d been developing Arts for Health Cornwall, and was about to take up my position at MMU. This time, we met quietly and had time to discuss the growing international movement that we were part of and the characters that peppered it - some born of vision and committed to social change - and those shadowy figures, pursuing the market-driven dark-arts! He was candid and we enjoyed long conversations - his vast experience helping me navigate the fraught new arena that I was entering.

We met regularly and informally many times over the intervening years, but rather bizarrely, it was our time spent in Australia, as the guest of Margret Meagher, that cemented our friendship. In 2009 her first International Arts and Health Conference, some 10,500 miles away from the northern climes of England, brought Mike and I together in a way that we’d repeat almost annually up until last November. I have so many grand memories of his complete professionalism (what an ambassador for this field!) and his mischievousness - and his wonderful and always appropriate use of expletives! Walking back to hotels from conference venues, in the heat of day and the dead of night, became a regular thing for us.

Critical Mass 2011 Durham UniversityAs members of the National Alliance for Arts and Health we did meet on UK soil, but it was the intimacy of time in Australia and his regular Critical Mass events that really got us thinking and acting as a wider community of interest. Mike regularly brought people together and effortlessly facilitated conversations on small and large scales and his Critical Mass events brought people around the globe together to actively pursue inquiries and develop practice. From these extended conversations sprang global friendships and some serious collaborative work.

Only last year and in the middle of his cancer treatment, did Mike come over to MMU to give us a suitably mischievous - but completely serious presentation - which he called - Randomised Thoughts, Controlled Ramblings and a few Trialised Thoughts! Exhausted from his cross-Pennine foray to the Manchester School of Art, Mike blew us away and opened his presentation with a booming youtube film of Psycho Killer by the Talking Heads, conjoining his early work by way of Welfare State International to the possibilities of generating new traditions - and sharing a wonderful anecdote about meeting the woman he would marry - and her slightly tipsy rendition of Psycho Killer to a nightclub full of people. Mike couldn’t half tell a quirky story.

Imploring us to share something of the spiritus mundi, Mike framed much of his presentation in David Byrne’s ‘slow dawning insight about creation,’ that 'context is everything.' Urging us to consider Bevan’s collective commitment to social habits and offering the best we can give to society, he subverted the context of health and safety from authoritative and risk-averse control, to caring for each other. His own work illustrated perfectly how investing in children and young people reaps dividends in generational change, not least in creating young researchers who inform new ways of thinking, being and doing.

Author of the seminal work in arts and community health ..A Social Tonic, Mike remained committed to the principles of the Welfare State and a believer that creativity, culture and the arts were central to flourishing communities. His generosity imbued all he did with warmth, typified in those celebratory and conversational events he so often hosted.

Outside our community of arts/health, I often describe the positive working relationships that emerge from shared beliefs and vision, and how once a full moon, these spill over into real and deeper friendships. I’m proud to have had Mike’s friendship and wonder who I will look up to now? Always following in his footsteps, I will remember him as a man of superb intelligence - a knowledge born of experience - hysterically funny, warm and with the deepest integrity. A record-collector extraordinaire, a family man and a free-thinker. We will carry forward your ideas, but will miss your presence Mike White.

12 June   Lovely messages came in about Mike White this week and it was heartening to hear from so many people who had been in some small way, affected by him and his vision of equal, healthy and flourishing communities. A mutual friend of ours had a baby this week and there’s something so bloody good and right and natural about this, it just reminds me - everything continues

Clive Parkinson
Arts for Health
Manchester Metropolitan University

A Tribute to Mike White from François Matarasso (UK)

Previously published here

"The most potent contribution that this new field of arts practice can make is the revelation of just how creative community health can be."
Arts Development in Community Health, A Social Tonic, Mike White 2009

Mike White, who died at home yesterday after a long illness, was a pioneer in community-based arts and health. His ideas will continue to influence the field for many years. He was working an as arts officer for Gateshead Council when I met him. His imaginative, creative projects recognised the real difference that participation in the arts could make to people’s lives. Sometimes that was very concrete, as in the campaigns against heart disease, but more typically it was a subtle understanding of how wellbeing affects the experience of life and therefore its outcomes. Later he went on to work at Durham University, where he was central to the establishment of the Centre for Medical Humanities and where I was sometimes able to participate in the meetings of friends and collaborators he organised.

Mike’s vision was not therapeutic. It was rooted in a passion for social justice and a belief that everyone deserves the best that life can give. It was rooted too in his character and his spirit. He was a deeply kind and generous person who always had time to share with others. He was unassuming and resolutely unpretentious, always more interested in other people and the outcomes of the work than in recognition of his own contribution.

Mike White, ...A Social Tonic cover.jpgToday, his many friends in the UK, Australia and elsewhere will be deeply saddened by his passing. I salute a friend and fellow spirit with a heavy heart. But there is some comfort in knowing what he contributed and knowing too that the people who share his ideas and values will continue to work for healthier, creative communities in which more people can flourish and make the most of life.

If you want to know more about Mike, there are a couple of previous posts about his work on the Regular Marvels site: Angels and Chalkie’s Demon Diary. The second piece is about the all-too brief blog in which he wrote about his illness with characteristic elegance and humility. There’s an interview he gave online, and some of his papers here; other resources to be found with a search engine.

But the best understanding of Mike’s work can be found in his book, Arts Development in Community Health, A Social Tonic. It’s a good investment for anyone interested in community arts.

A Tribute to Mike White from Naj Wikoff (USA)

Mike White, a pioneer in the field of arts in health, has died after a two-year struggle with cancer. Mike’s great and lasting contribution to our field and society as a whole was through demonstrating and grounding the value of the arts in wellbeing over the whole arch of life.

Much great work had been done in both the UK and United States in the area of arts in health in hospitals, but Mike was the champion for the arts and health in community settings. When I first met him in the mid 1990s, he was working out of a library in Gateshead, England. The northeast of England was going through hard economic times with many mines closed or closing, many people living with severe health challenges as outcomes of the mining and its related industries, and in the midst of that was Mike getting people to make reed and tissue lanterns as part of using the arts to encourage people dance, walk, and sing their way to healthier living.

For Mike, well-being meant the mind, body, and spirit. To that end he championed and helped organize all manner of arts activities that taught people about safe sex, connected people of differing social and health status through walk-in community art centers, and helped people transition through life unto death. He was actively involved in using the arts to improve the economic wellbeing of his region, exemplified by Anthony Gormley’s Angel of the North, and was a champion of using the arts to address issues of social justice.

Further, he measured their benefits way before many in the field did. He and his colleagues organized some of the first national arts in health conferences, all with a strong emphasis on community and individual wellness.

Mike’s shift to the University of Durham, UK where he was a Senior Research Fellow in Arts and Health at the Centre for Medical Humanities and St. Chad’s College, enabled him to dig deeper into understanding the benefits of the arts as well as expanding his collaborations with schools and universities, and working more on the world stage where he profoundly influenced the arts in health in Australia, Canada, the United States and elsewhere. His book Arts Development in Community Health: a social tonic is a must read for anyone with an interest in this field, a well-thumbed “bible” that I refer to time and time again.

Above all, Mike was a great friend – a person I just enjoyed. I loved his energy, his keen intelligence, his huge heart, his insights, and his sense of fun. He is one of those angels that will be with me, and with our field forever.

Naj Wikoff
Founder, Creative Healing Connections and Fulbright Senior Specialist (USA)

A Tribute from Chris Mead (Australia)

I’m not sure Mike would like the term of legend but the hat fits and we miss him already.

A little conscious of remaining courteous to the barrage of pushing bee liners is a memory from the 2010 Arts and Health Australia conference where Mike was generously absorbing the infectious enthusiasm he had stirred amongst delegates over tea. It was if we all had a story or three questions to ask and hoping he wouldn’t run out of copies of his book Arts Development in Community Health, A Social Tonic.

Mike writes in the closing of the books introduction, that he hoped what he had observed, learned and discussed in the field would “offer a route map of future connections”. He shapes his enquiry into “looking at how the multi-sector engagement with communities through the arts can establish a tonal centre that entrains a range of interventions to ‘sing from the same sheet’ as regards to community health development.”

His sharing of best practice, passion for creative collaborators and policy drivers impacts our work tremendously. Mike has offered a route map for future connections, a strengthening of voices and friendships where we share joint determination, curiosity and love for the work we do. We may be far flung from the “Angel of the North” but like others internationally, your arts in health “family” is tightly woven, celebrating your life and getting back to ‘arts is the business of health’… just as you would like.

VALE Mike White. Cheers from your Tassie daffodils.

Chris Mead
Creature Tales, Tasmania   creaturetales.com.au

A Tribute from Ed Carroll (Ireland)

Mike was a really important person for the Blue Drum Agency in Dublin, Ireland a decade ago in our research on community arts and well being. He helped us imagine ways in which community well being could grow from a grassroots movement inspired by community development. All our love to Mike's family.

Ed Carroll
Director, Blue Drum Agency

Biography

Mike White was Senior Research Fellow at St. Chad's College, University of Durham, UK and Adviser on Strategic Development for the Australian Centre for Arts and Health with regard to establishing an international network for both practitioners and researchers in arts and health.

He studied English at Exeter College, Oxford, but ran away from an early career in academia to explore pioneering arts initiatives in social justice. He became involved in arts in health work from 1988 when he set up the first arts in primary care project in the UK at Brierley Hill. Mike was also a co-founder of Welfare State International and Womad, the world music festival.

From 2000 until 2014, Mike was Research Fellow in Arts and Health at the Centre for Medical Humanities, working on a programme which included nurturing arts in health projects in schools and communities, workforce development programmes for creativity in healthcare, project-based evaluations, and audits and literature reviews of arts in health for Government agencies. Mike developed the arts in health component of an inter-disciplinary 5-year research programme in medical humanities, funded by major grant from the Wellcome Trust, which explored the question "what makes for human flourishing?" In 2005, he was awarded a fellowship of the UK's National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts to research community-based arts in health and build national/international links in this field. A resulting book Arts Development in Community Health - a social tonic was published by Radcliffe in 2009, and in June 2011 Mike convened the first international 'critical mass' meeting to set up ongoing exchanges of research and practice. Mike received the Royal Society for Public Health Award 2011 for 'innovative and outstanding contribution to arts addressing health inequalities - practice and research'. Mike edited a special issue of the journal Arts & Health and, with Margret Meagher, a UNESCO Observatory E-journal - both of these publications, in 2013, focussed on international arts and health practice and research.

Prior to working at Durham University, Mike worked at Gateshead Council where he developed many arts in health and arts for older people projects, as well as public art commissions such as the landmark 'Angel of the North' sculpture by Antony Gormley.  Until his untimely death on 5 June, 2015, Mike ran an independent consultancy, Common Knowledge, with long-time artist colleague Mary Robson. Common Knowledge continues as a project management, learning development and programme advisory service for effective workforce training in arts in health, social pedagogy in schools, and international collaborations in practice and research.

A Spotted Hankie and the Open Road – and Arts in Health in Australia

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Posted by Administrator on Mon, 13 Jul 2015

The Whitworth is UK Museum of the Year 2015

The Whitworth, part of the University of Manchester, has been awarded the prestigious Art Fund Prize.

The WhitworthOn 1 July, at a ceremony at Tate Modern, the gallery was awarded the Art Fund Prize for Museum of the Year 2015. It’s the largest arts award in Britain and the biggest museum prize in the world. It is awarded to the museum or gallery in the UK that is judged to have best demonstrated excellence, innovation and imagination.

The Whitworth reopened on 14 February, but while closed did all it could to remain “open”, with pop-up projects all over the city and beyond, maintaining links to existing audiences and building new ones. Since reopening, the new building makes possible larger and more ambitious projects, presentations and exhibitions, and fulfils the gallery's potential as a major UK cultural destination.

“During 2014, while MUMA created our new gallery, we took the Whitworth and its collections out into the city,” explains Director Maria Balshaw. “We used the time to create more ambitious programmes. We considered what sorts of collaborations could work at the Whitworth, between young people and our collections, say, or between artists and the academics we share a campus with. And we created an ambitious opening season of exhibitions and events that could only happen here at the Whitworth.

“That period of intensive work paid off. In the five months since our reopening, 200,000 people have enjoyed everything from Cornelia Parker’s collaboration with the Nobel Prize-winning scientist, Konstantin Novoselov - alongside her monumental new commission, War Room - to hip hop in the Grand Hall, tai chi in the art garden and an exhibition curated by older men from a local care home. In between, we’ve hosted ten, critically acclaimed exhibitions and witnessed a ‘takeover’ of the gallery by young people."

Stephen Deuchar, Art Fund director and chair of judges said “the transformation of the Whitworth has been one of the great museum achievements of recent years. It has changed the landscape: it truly feels like a museum of the future.”

The panel of judges comprised artist Michael Landy; design critic and author Alice Rawsthorn; books and arts editor of The Economist Fiammetta Rocco; and Axel Rüger, director of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. The University of Manchester's Whitworth was chosen from a shortlist of six finalists: Dunham Massey (National Trust), Altrincham; IWM, London; The MAC, Belfast; Oxford University Museum of Natural History; and HM Tower of London.

Ed Watts, Engagement Manager at the Whitworth will speak at Celebrate Creative Ageing Sydney 2015. Mr Watts led the national research project exploring older men’s participation in society and culture, culminating in public programmes, an exhibition and publication of a guide to establishing similar projects.

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Posted by Administrator on Tue, 14 Jul 2015

2014 Arts and Health Conference broadcast on Radio National

The 6th arts and health conference started at a cracking pace with ABC Radio National’s direct broadcast on Life Matters presented by Natasha Mitchell in conversation with keynote speakers Liss Gabb, Janet Morrison, Jerril Rechter and Mike White about why arts and health practice matters in our society and what makes it work.

Listen to the ABC Radio National Life Matters Podcast here.

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Posted by Administrator on Fri, 21 Nov 2014

Hello Koalas Sculpture Project - An Arts and Health Public Art Program launched by the NSW Premier

The Premier of NSW, the Hon. Mike Baird MP recently launched the Hello Koalas Sculpture Project in Port Macquarie on the Mid North Coast of NSW.

AHA's Margret Meagher, Leslie Williams MP, artist Kerry Smith-Taughkin, Mike Baird, NSW PremierFifty one metre high fibreglass koala sculptures, featuring hand painted artist designs, have been created to form a sculpture trail across the Port Macquarie Hastings LGA, as a signature cultural event for the region.

The Hello Koalas Sculpture Project includes a koala sculpture design ‘Dementia – Looking for the Key’, sponsored by the NSW Government to promote dementia friendly communities. Local Member of Parliament for Port Macquarie, Leslie Williams is leading the State Government’s pilot program to reduce the social isolation, which often accompanies a diagnosis of dementia.

A second sculpture with an arts and health theme is ‘OMA – Creative Ageing Koala’, sponsored by The Whiddon Group. 

Both designs were commissioned by Arts and Health Australia and created by Melbourne artist, Kerry Smith-Taughkin. Kerry attended the Arts and Health Australia conference in Melbourne in 2010, presenting on the use of sculpture to reduce stigma around alzheimer's disease.

Kerry will again be attending the 2014 conference at the National Gallery of Victoria in November and will lead delegates in a collaborative art making project – a group painting of a koala sculpture to commemorate the 6th international conference and celebrate the growing arts and health community in Australia and internationally.

The sculpture, ‘painted by many hands’, will then take up residence at the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre, Austin Health Melbourne as part of their arts and health program and art collection.

The Whiddon Group, which has sponsored OMA, manages 19 aged care facilities in NSW and is committed to the integration of creative ageing programs in its service delivery. According to Karn Nelson, Executive General Manager Strategic Policy and Research: “Our vision is for the broader concept of creative ageing to be integral to our care approach for the whole person, helping us integrate care for our clients’ social, emotional and physical needs”.

Arts and Health Australia is working with the Whiddon Group on the development of a creative ageing program, for people in both independent living and dementia care facilities, around art-making, poetry and koalas!

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Posted by Administrator on Fri, 26 Sep 2014

Hello Koalas joins Texas Children's Hospital

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The Hello Koalas Sculpture Project, an initiative of Arts and Health Australia, was proud to participate in the Global Alliance for Arts and Health conference at Texas Children's Hospital, Houston in April 2014.

Hello Koalas Sculpture Project (www.hellokoalas.com) is designed as a community cultural development program in the Port Macquarie Hastings region, with many layers and contexts including an Art, Poetry and Dementia program, supported by the NSW Government to promote dementia friendly communities in New South Wales.

Conference delegates were invited to contribute their fingerprints to create an overall design on a one metre high fibreglass koala sculpture, ensuring that all attending were represented in a personal and lasting way. Each fingerprint celebrated each delegate's distinctive and unique sense of identity and place within the global arts and health community and created a permanent record of the 25th anniversary arts and health conference - through the acquisition of the sculpture for the art collection of the Texas Children's Hospital.

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It is also significant that the koala, a species under threat, is only one of two animals, which has an individual fingerprint. Each koala has a different fingerprint from other koalas, as in humans. This reinforces the links between humanity and nature and the importance of koala care and conservation to preserve the species and environmental sustainability. (Pick which image above is the human handprint?!)

We hope this collaborative art-making experience reinforced the important message that the field of Arts and Health is a creative pathway to health and wellbeing because its practice recognises the core and intrinsic value of all people - irrespective of culture and circumstance. And it was definitely good fun with lots of camaraderie.

Thanks to Helen Currier and the team at Texas Children's Hospital for supporting the Hello Koalas initiative at the Alliance for Arts and Health International Conference in Houston. 

We plan to reprise the idea and take a koala sculpture to Melbourne for our 6th annual international conference at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne from 11 to 13 November 2014. See you there!

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Posted by Administrator on Mon, 10 Mar 2014

Alzheimer's Poetry Project (APP) featured on PBS News Hour

The Alzheimer's Poetry Project (APP) was featured on PBS News Hour's "Where Poetry Lives," Natasha Trethewey, poet laureate of the United States, and Jeffrey Brown spent time at the Alzheimer's Poetry Project in Brooklyn. The international program works with people with dementia to try to trigger memory by playfully engaging with language.

Gary Glazner, founder and Executive Director of the AAP is a plenary speaker at Celebrate Creative Ageing Sydney 2015.

www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/entertainment/july-dec13/poetry_09-12.htmlRead more...

Posted by Administrator on Fri, 13 Sep 2013

Australian Centre for Arts and Health - the Not For Profit Peak Body for the Arts and Health Sector in Australia

The Australian Centre for Arts and Health.

Vision: Health and Wellbeing through the Arts

Mission: To promote and support Health and Wellbeing through the Arts

Who We Are: National peak body to promote and support arts and health practices in Australia

Inaugural Members:

  • Molly Carlile, Manager, Palliative Care Services, Austin Health, Melbourne and Manager, Arts in Healthcare, Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre, Austin Health, Melbourne, VIC
  • David Doyle, Executive Director, DADAA Inc (Disability in the Arts, Disadvantage in the Arts) Fremantle WA
  • Malcolm Moir, Head of Development, Sydney Festival, NSW
  • Margret Meagher, Executive Director, Arts and Health Australia and Executive Director, Creative Ageing Australia, Port Macquarie, NSW

The objectives of The Australian Centre for Arts and Health are to:

  1. To promote and develop the application of creativity and the arts for health and quality of life outcomes for all people in Australia, regardless of age, race, gender or religious or political persuasion. 
  2. To promote arts and creativity as a positive activity for people with physical and mental health issues and healthy ageing.
  3. To provide a broad-based communication network in relation to art and creative expression for people with health outcomes for both the individual and the community 
  4. To foster co-operation, information and resource sharing between groups and individuals to ensure effective and efficient use of arts and creative services to meet the needs of people with disabilities and/or disadvantage. 
  5. To provide a direct link, through consultative processes, with government and non-government organisations involved in, or intending to be involved in, the field of the arts and creative expression. 
  6. To advocate, on behalf of the sector, to government and non-government organisations on all matters relating to the arts. 
  7. To facilitate community education about the role the arts and creative expression and appreciation to people and the community.

Australian Centre for Arts and Health (ACAH) – Building a new future for arts and health in Australia

ACAH is a not-for-profit health promotion charity with DGR status, building on the achievements of national advocacy and networking organization Arts and Health Australia (AHA). 

ACAH has been established to represent and influence arts and health practice in Australia, working closely with the sector to form a united vision and movement nationally.

ACAH is an organization with outstanding international connections and will stand alongside peak bodies in the UK (National Alliance for Arts, Health and Wellbeing), USA (Alliance for Arts and Health), Canada (ArtsHealth Network Canada) and support new peak body initiatives under development, such as in Singapore and Hong Kong.

ACAH Contact

Director and Board Member: Margret Meagher, Arts and Health Australia

Tel: 0416 641 482
Email: margret@artsandhealth.org
Web: www.artsandhealth.org

 

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Posted by Administrator on Thu, 25 Sep 2014