AHSW's Director, Trustees, and Members reflect on various aspects of arts, health and wellbeing.

Director’s Monthly Reflection

AHSW Director Alex Coulter shares her monthly reflections, as well as AHSW upcoming events and news!

We have received around 50 responses to our survey on learning and practice development for arts, health and wellbeing practitioners. We would love to get to 100 responses! It is open until the 10th April:

Our learning event in partnership with the Creative Dementia Arts Network attracted an audience of 95 and there were lively breakout sessions using a jamboard to collect ideas in a co-design process for a Creative Arts in Dementia Practice Handbook. This is being developed by Maria Pasiecznik Parsons and Dr Richard Coaten and will be published next year by Jessica Kingsley Press.

The South Western Regional Library Services have commissioned us to deliver a new short course in June, Creative Health: support wellbeing and manage stress. It is open to non-members or for any librarians out there, so find out if the course if for you  HERE >>

We are working with The Holburne Museum for their People Make Museums Symposium – Museums & Care – A Learning Symposium for Heritage, Health and Arts professionals and everyone interested in therapeutic creativity and care in museums. This cross-sector event will bring together museums, arts organisations and mental health professionals to talk about how care is manifested in museums. With a focus on creativity and therapeutic spaces we’ll examine good practice, share learning and hear from people who have participated in ‘heritage and health’ programmes . Come to be inspired and supported, build networks and grab some practical ideas, find out more HERE>>

In Creativity and Wellbeing Week, we will be hosting two events. Julia Puebla Fortier and I will be opening up the conversation about the Creative Health Learning Alliance in an interactive session on Monday 16th May at 11am, and on 18th May at 3pm, Philippa Forsey, Creativity Works, and Jayne Howard, Arts Well, will be discussing how partnership working with health and care colleagues has led to co-produced training for artists. There’ll be more information about these in the next AHSW e-bulletin, make sure you are signed up here –

We want to support knowledge exchange and the move towards ‘evidence-informed’ practice, so, for your monthly tasters from CHW21, I have selected some research sessions from the first day. Population Studies in the UK and Nordic countries, includes Daisy Fancourt talking about the mechanisms and actions by which the arts affect health, Louise Mansfield on everyday creativity and Anita Jensen and Wenche Torrissen speaking about culture and public health in Scandinavia. The session on What does it all add up to? Capturing the value of culture for health and wellbeing  introduces the Centre for Cultural Value with panellists Ranjita Dhital, Marisa De Andrade and Kiz Bangerh. A session on Loneliness and Covid-19 with Hei Wan (Karen) Mak, Norma Daykin and Hilary Bungay was chaired by Theo Stickley.

In the Research Proceedings, you can find details of all the research papers that were presented. Theo took on the brave task of editing a special issue of Perspectives in Public Health which includes both research and practice papers from the conference.

If you haven’t managed to read our recently released Culture, Health, and Wellbeing International Conference (CHW21) Overview Report, then download the report HERE. It is a short report which contains feedback and learning from an extraordinary conference.

Keep well,


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