Catherine Martin, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and Stephen Donnelly, Minister for Health, jointly affirmed their recognition of the health and wellbeing benefits of creativity and arts at The Art of Being Healthy and Well on 22 June.
This national symposium was co-hosted by the all-of-government Creative Ireland Programme, the Department of Health (Healthy Ireland), the Health Service Executive and the Arts Council at the Royal College of Physicians in Dublin. Policy-makers and practitioners from the health, arts and culture sectors considered how best to harness the powerful contribution creative engagement can make to our health and wellbeing. The full symposium recording is now available to view here.
In opening the symposium, Minister Martin recognised the long and rich history of collaboration between the arts and healthcare sectors, and emphasised the need to create a more supportive and sustainable environment through greater collaboration and integration between the sectors:
Minister Martin announced pilot funding, through the Creative Ireland Programme, to explore closer collaboration between local arts and health sectors in the area of social prescribing. The initiative will assist GPs and other health practitioners to refer people to local arts and creative initiatives in five pilot locations in Waterford, Dublin, Donegal and Mayo where this would be beneficial for their wellbeing.
The third panel, Arts and creativity as a strategy for community wellbeing, explored the community setting perspective with Maureen Kennelly (Director, Arts Council), Justine Foster (Programme Manager, Uillinn West Cork Arts Centre) and Yvonne O’Neill (National Director of Community Operations, HSE).
Two videos showcasing storytelling in the paediatrics ward of University Hospital Waterford, led by Waterford Healing Arts Trust, and the Musicians on Call programme with residents of St Camillus Nursing Home in Limerick, led by Kids Classics, provided examples of the types of creative engagement that support the delivery of acute and community healthcare in Ireland.
Updated 3 July 2022 to include the full conference recording.