During the pandemic some of our engagement programmes were temporarily suspended. However, we were determined to find new and exciting ways to continue to engage patients, staff and our wider community with the Arts during this challenging time. With the help of many of our wonderful facilitators and partners, we were able to create digital content and deliver remote projects. This included online live and interactive music, art and creative writing workshops, postal projects, pre-recorded workshops and art & wellbeing e-magazines.
Paper Birch brought amazing interactive content to Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust patients online.
They previously delivered weekly arts and craft workshops via video-call on the Neuro- Rehabilitation ward. These are now back up and running in-person.
Bi-weekly evening art workshops were established and run by artist Rhian Sutcliffe for Imperial Trust staff. These workshops continue to be run in-person on a monthly basis.
Art and Wellbeing Group
Our Art and Wellbeing group is one of our most successful and long running projects for both staff and out-patients at the Trust.
Lead Facilitator and Artist Marenka Gabler made fantastic efforts to keep the group going both with monthly digital mailings full of art activities for the group, as well as live video-call workshops for people to get crafty and inspired by our art collection, from the comfort of their own homes. Our monthly session is now back in person (2nd Saturday of the month) held at Kindred Studios.
Massage and Melodies
Massage and Melodies is an initiative conceived by Emily Hills Neonatal Occupational Therapist and facilitated in partnership with Music in Hospitals & Care (MiHC). In response to our Lullaby Hour project in Neonatal Intensive Care being on hold due to Covid-19, the project aims to use the positive sensory experiences of touch and music to relax both parents and baby, promoting connection, communication, sleep and digestion. The project invites small groups of recently discharged families from Neonatal Intensive Care to meet on Zoom over four weeks. The weekly sessions are facilitated by Emily, who teaches baby massage whilst singer songwriter Emma Stevens sings lullabies.
Wallace Collection X Paul Rubenstein
Up until March 2020, professional storyteller Paul Rubenstein worked in partnership with the Wallace Collection to bring their collection to patients in our Paediatric wards.
Using storytelling, museum objects were brought to life for young patients. Paul brought his magical stories for children to life, but this time via video!
Akademi have been working with us for a number of years, bringing South-Asian dance techniques to our Medicine for the Elderly patients.
Their work has aided patients’ physical rehabilitation, and Akademi have been working hard to bring their classes to the screen.
You can watch all of their video tutorials through our Art Resource Libary; which we would encourage all staff, patients and wider community to watch and have a go!
Creative writing is a fantastic tool for promoting mindfulness as well as creativity.
Our Arts Engagements Co-ordinator Megan Bastable ran creative writing workshops for Oncology patients at the Trust, using her experience as a playwright and facilitator.