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Webinar: Creativity & Wellbeing

Learn about working with the healthcare sector, measuring impact and the importance of partnerships in this Q&A with the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance and Saffron Hall.

In this webinar, the Arts & Culture Finance (ACF) team speak with Victoria Hume, Director of the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance and Thomas Hardy, Learning & Participation Director of Saffron Hall about the different ways of working with the health sector in a cultural setting, how to measure impact with care for the participants and how social investment can play a role in developing sustainable business models. 

The Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance (CHWA) is a national membership organisation representing everyone who believes that creativity and cultural engagement can transform our health and wellbeing. Saffron Hall is an award-winning 740-seat performance space built in the grounds of Saffron Walden County High School. In partnership with Anglia Ruskin University, Saffron Hall has been running Together In Sound, a music therapy group that aims to bring the power of music to those living with dementia and their companions.

The Q&A with Victoria and Thomas begins at 18:20, preceded by an introduction from the ACF team that explains what we offer, what we look for and other examples of health and wellbeing projects that the team have invested in. 

The key points from the Q&A are below:

  • Partnerships can be a great way to approach creative health interventions, as each organisation will bring their specialist skills and knowledge to the project. Saffron Hall has established a partnership with the Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy Research at Anglia Ruskin university, combining a community embedded arts organisation with academic therapeutic practice.
  • Find out what’s around you in your geographic area. The CHWA has regional champions that can give you more information and links to local organisations working in a similar area. 
  • It’s important to build in adequate support for people delivering the sessions, particularly when working with vulnerable groups. This might mean counselling or reflective group sessions and debriefs, or supervision within the session itself. Every year CHWA awards organisations that are ‘Practicing Well’ so to find out more about what good practice in this area looks like, you can read about the shortlisted candidates for the 2021 awards on the CHWA website.
  • Artefacts created in creative wellbeing sessions (songs, performances etc.) can be a compelling way to demonstrate the outcomes of your programme. The Together in Sound documentary was a great way of illustrating the effects of the programme, how it worked and what it meant to the participants.
  • If your main activities are not health focused (live performances for example), it’s important to articulate the totality of your impact as an organisation to your funders and paying members (if this is part of your model) so you can get buy-in from different stakeholders about the health work you’re doing alongside the day-to-day. 


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