Art on Prescription

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Card making in week three

Together with Little Bird, Beauty and Utility Arts recently collaborated on an Arts on Prescription evaluation project in North West Leicestershire. We are delighted to share our report conclusions with others in our sector, to further support the case for arts as a social prescribing tool for patients with low level mental health difficulties.

Art on Prescription North West Leicestershire, took place at Measham Medical Unit between April and June 2016, funded by the North West Leicestershire ‘Staying Healthy Partnership’ grant and provided structured Arts and Health interventions for twelve patients experiencing low level mental ill health across two six week blocks of workshops.

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Weaving in week 4

Using the Public Health for England, Arts for Health and Wellbeing evaluation guidelines (2016) for measuring outcomes, we used the WEMWBS, PHQ-9, GAD-7 scores and qualitative feedback, pre and post intervention and were able to demonstrate project outcomes as having a positive impact on the wellbeing of patients participating.

Click on the image below to read the report.

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Crafting Relationships

Crafting Relationships, our intergenerational strand of work, has been running since 2012.

Most of our current work is as a delivery partner, together with emh homes, on our local Big Lottery Funded, Ageing Better project Leicester Ageing Together. Scroll through the photos below to get an overview of all the different projects!

 

Spinney Hills radio pay April – June 2017

Writer facilitator and Beauty and Utility Arts Associate, Katie Sone worked with a group of year 7 students from Al Aqsa school and the Leicester Ageing Together elders group at Highfields Community Centre in Leicester to produce a collaborative radio play.

Huge thanks to MGL Media for recording the play and talking us through the techy bits!

Click on the link to hear their masterpiece!

 

 

 

Crafting Relationships for Leicester Ageing Together – Printmaking with Mandeep Dhadialla – March 2017

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicester Ageing Together – emh homes Wakerley Court and home schooled children Nov – Dec 2016

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicester Ageing Together – Jameah Girls’ Academy and community members Nov – Dec 2016

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicester Ageing Together – emh homes Len Hollis Court Court Ur Choice July – Aug 2016
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Crafting Relationships – Leicester Ageing Together – Spinney Hills community members and Focus Charity April – May 2016

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicester Ageing Together – emh homes Scarborough Court May 2016

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicestershire County Council Wellbeing Hi 5 – emh homes Prior Park and Lewis Charlton School

 

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Crafting Relationships – NW Leicestershire St. Mary’s Court and emh homes Agar Nook community Centre

 

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Crafting Relationships – Leicestershire County Council Innovation Challenge – emh homes St. Mary’s and local primary school

 

 

Show your workings no.1

Today sees the start of a different type of blog post from me.

See what you think …

As a child I was always rearranging my bedroom. Dragging furniture around on a Saturday afternoon gave a fresh perspective and renewed vigour, if you can have renewed vigour aged 12.

That feeling of wanting to reshape, refresh, reinvigorate and restore has never left me and over the last couple of years I’ve found new ways to embrace it in work and in life. I’ve not perfected anything, and I’m not sure I ever want to completely tick that challenge off the list; it’s one for life, to be tweaked and tailored through every new adventure and challenge.

If you’ve come across me before, you’ll know I spend a lot of time in supermarket car parks thinking about things … everything. It’s my safe space, parked at a distance, vaguely observing the hum drum of daily life, letting the filing cabinet that is my mind do some sifting and sorting.

Well, it feels like time to make the next step, or maybe let’s call it ‘a next step’, because I’m not 100% sure what it is yet, but I do know I might burst soon if I don’t do something about all these ideas and feelings building up and vying for my attention.

I have promised myself (say it out loud and write it in a blog post so it actually happens) that in December and January I will take some time out to work on what’s next and I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to that. There are some things I want to do in the lead up to that time too.

Running a social enterprise is tough. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and more often than not I wish there was a pause button because as much as I love every bit of what I do, it’s FULL ON, all the time. That might suit some people, but I know I need space, I need time away from everyone and everything to be the best I can and offer the best I can to all those Beauty and Utility Arts works with.

So, I thought I would share this part of the path with anyone who is interested. The other day a friend said the words ‘lifestyle business’ to me and those two words have bounced around my head ever since. That’s exactly what the aim is, to incorporate this new understanding of just how crucial reflection and simplicity is to my work and life and see if it can somehow impact on them both.

I’ve decided to call these posts ‘Show your workings’ because this is going to be about working through, sharing and testing some findings and tools I’ve already come across and those I’ll will hopefully find along the way.

Time to put the kettle on now and set the wheels in motion, so catch you soon.

ttfn

 

Katherine

Brand *new* Art on Prescription project

This coming Monday, Beauty and Utility Arts and Little Bird SOS will be starting a brand new partnership project.

Art on Prescription, funded by North West Leicestershire’s Staying Healthy grant, will run at Measham Medical Centre until June 2016, offering practice patients opportunities to join in one of two six week arts based projects, either via GP/IAPT referral or self referral.

Art on Prescription aims to create a safe, relaxed space for patients experiencing low level mental ill health to explore their creative side away from everyday worries and concerns.

Our project will be evaluated for efficacy and impact of arts based interventions for patients and staff within GP surgeries.

Rikke Digerud-Waring – Arts and Dementia

Peg collage x 3

Rikke is a Leicestershire artist Beauty and Utility Arts have worked with on a number of projects and she has very kindly donated two pieces of her own dementia themed artwork, which now sit outside our Atkins Building office in Hinckley. You can drop by and see Rikke’s artwork any time the Atkins building is open.

In Rikke’s own words …

My artwork is often inspired by the human conditions and related to memory, culture and diversity.

I like to take real, everyday objects and transform them into something extraordinary.

This work was created just after my mother-in-law was diagnosed with dementia.

I wanted the work to be a tribute to her but also to other people who have been affected by dementia so they could identify with the symptoms.

Orchids:

The last time she stayed with us, before going into a home, Peg would ask again and again what day it was. We would tell her and then a few minutes later she would ask again and get them mixed up. She loved flowers and always tended them with care. The decayed orchids symbolize the decay of memory but are also quite beautiful and poignant in themselves. Just like memory.

Daisies:

Again connecting Peg with flowers, the daisies symbolizes how her memory went “on and off”, bit by bit and in the end she did not remember who I was. A profound moment in any relationship.

Brand new 365 day #5ways2wellbeing project

So, it’s New Year’s Eve tomorrow and I’m ready to start a new Beauty and Utility Arts challenge.

Challenges stimulate my mind and this one will focus on my favourite thing about our work … finding innovative, creative, visual and powerful ways for us to engage with more people by listening…learning…responding to what makes people tick and how that impacts on our work with communities and individuals across Arts, Health and Wellbeing.

Our 365 day wellbeing project uses the five ways to wellbeing evidence based actions developed by the new economics foundation, now in use all over the country  inspiring discussions and actions around health and wellbeing in our everyday lives.

We use the five ways to wellbeing as much as possible as a simple, effective tool and now I’d like to do something different.

Every day I will Tweet an action and a picture based on one of the five ways to wellbeing (see below) using the hashtag #5ways2wellbeing and I’d like everybody else out there to do the same. That way we can see a bigger picture, throughout the seasons, of what makes the UK tick when it comes to wellbeing.

There will be guest posts along the way, starting on 1st January with a very special guest, short interviews to view and at the end of each month we’ll pull together all the tweets and pictures for all to see.

I hope you’ll be in on this with me and spread the word far and wide, because the more people who get involved, the better.

Five ways to wellbeing graphic

Launching our You Tube channel on Alcohol Awareness Week …

Beauty and Utility Arts now has a You Tube channel so we can share even more of our Arts and Health work with you.

The launch has tied in nicely with Alcohol Awareness Week ( 18th – 22nd November) and the release of a piece of work we’ve been busy with since the Summer on the topic of alcohol misuse.

Together with Lunchbox Films Beauty and Utility Arts worked with adults within council supported alcohol groups covering Hinckley and Bosworth, Oadby and Wigston to develop short film for selected local secondary schools. In addition we’ve produced a teacher’s pack for Key Stage 3 and 4 students.

‘By combining the knowledge and lived experience of all project partners and participants we hope we have produced a piece of animation and schools training pack designed to educate, stimulate independent thinking and encourage informed personal choices around the subject of alcohol misuse.’ Katherine – Director, Beauty and Utility Arts

We’re giving you advice based on our own real life stories.’  A 

Take a look at the video here and get in touch for further details about the pack or producing something similar for your own organisation.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGg4u6Qi4v4&feature=youtu.be

Libraries ain’t what they used to be ;o)

I love libraries.

The smell and feel of well handled books, the memories of visits as a child with hair still wet from the swimming baths, the potential for learning and discovering all come flowing back into my mind as I step into one.

Beauty and Utility Arts has been working closely with North West Leicestershire District Council on a number of arts and health initiatives recently and back on October we teamed up with Lisa Pidgeon of Little Bird School of Stitchcraft.

Lisa’s blogpost on her own website sums the whole experience up perfectly, so we hope you enjoy…

 

Wellbeing Hi-5 :: Bombing Coalville Library

Those of you that are regular readers of my blog will know that I am passionate about the relationship of arts/crafts and health and wellbeing.  I was lucky enough to be able to attend the Culture, Health and Wellbeing Conference in Bristol earlier this year and since then have been forging my career in this direction.
Throughout the month of October, Leicestershire (my home ground) is celebrating the ways in which the arts, culture and heritage contribute towards health and wellbeing.  The ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ is used as a framework to deliver a programme of over 200 wellbeing events taking place across the shire.
In total I have been asked to deliver 3 workshops  for Creative Leicestershire and 1 workshop for Beauty and Utility Arts as part of the Wellbeing Hi-5 celebrations. This first session took place in Coalville library on 10th Oct.
Katherine Brown, from Beauty and Utility Arts, ran a session of papercrafts making bunting and flowers and, for the younger crafters, characters from Goldilocks and the Three Bears…

The Knitting Gurrillas of Birstall (KGB) were recruited to do a special yarn bomb and participants were invited to hide allsorts of little items on the bookshelves and between the pages of books.  Yarn bombing is a way of brightening up an area and, in the case of the KGB, making people smile…

Mr Hissing Sid liked the nature section…

The mice liked it in the children’s section especially the little dark corners…

The younger borrowers had fun yarn bombing…

And later we enlisted the elder borrowers to have a go at hiding woolly gifts between the pages of books.  Pink for pink lovers…

Bookworms for the classic readers…

Crafty bookworms for the craft lovers…

Since the workshop I have had a message from the library staff who to say that they have spotted people finding the knitted lovelies and that:
“It’s great to see the delight on their faces when they find something.  I hope it is bringing lots of smiles”
I think the KGB would agree that this is mission accomplished!