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'Creative Progression Process' programme

The Mental Health Creative Support Service [MHCSS] provides a process of engagement and progression for supporting people with mental and ill health across BANES. The project is currently being delivered by Creativity Works in Bath and North East Somerset on behalf of B&NES Adult Social Care and Housing.

Winner of the Arts & Health South West Award 2013 for an arts organisation


The ‘Mental Health Creative Support Service’ (MHCSS) supports people with low to moderate mental health needs to have more independent and fulfilling lives by developing peer support networks and groups. Our mission is to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues and to be actively involved in improving local services by those affected by mental health issues. Our aim is to use the skills and talents of group members to improve the experience of living with mental health issues in B&NES.

Creativity Works is currently supporting 6 Progression Groups that have evolved through a process of engagement, support and training to develop as self run community groups with a vibrant and inspiring focus around creativity and skills development rather than on their health problems. Participants express themselves through a wide variety of art forms including visual arts, creative poetry and writing, the spoken word and singing and are facilitated to develop and celebrate their ‘voice’. The Creativity Works ‘Creative Progression Process’ treats people as individuals, as more than their illness and by working with real people/artists and working from venues based in the community participants/ people experience a tangible link with culture and mainstream community activities and services.

People with lived experience of mental health are referred into the projects from mental health services and organisations. Creativity Works has identified that participant’s progress through a minimum of 4 different stages on their journey to recovery and independence, and that they need different levels of support at each stage.

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