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Vitamin C: The positive effect of creativity on wellbeing in older people       printable version
16 Jul 2020 filed by editor - General, Arts, Health

A webinar designed to explore the value of the Arts and Creativity in promoting Mental Health & Wellbeing among older people, Tuesday 21st July 2020

The Creative Ireland Programme in association with Healthy Ireland and the HSE Mental Health & Wellbeing Programme have announced a Creative Conversation webinar which will explore how creative activity impacts on the mental wellbeing of older people.

By examining specific case studies that engaged with older people on different creative projects as well as examples of best practice, the Vitamin C: The positive effect of creativity on wellbeing in older people the panel will explore differing perspectives on the value of creative activities in later life to mental health and wellbeing, and will suggest practical and policy requirements that could support future developments.

It is the ambition of all involved in this important discussion that it will identify the key challenges from both health and creative perspectives as well as opportunities for future collaboration and help start a conversation on specific areas for action in the area of arts and older people.

Catherine Martin T.D., Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht said: "At the heart of the Creative Ireland Programme is the belief that participation in creative activity supports and improves our individual wellbeing. This Creative Conversation - and the ongoing partnership between the Creative Ireland Programme of my Department  the HSE and Healthy Ireland - represents an ideal opportunity to examine how engagement with creative activities has been proven to impact mental health in older members of our society, and how we can develop new ways to expand on and improve these interventions."

Frank Feighan, Minister of State with responsibility for Public Health, Wellbeing and National Drugs Strategy, added: "The COVID-19 pandemic has really reminded us, that maintaining and improving our wellbeing enhances and improves our overall ability to cope with the ongoing stresses of everyday life. I firmly believe that now more than ever, we realise the importance of looking after our mental wellbeing. As Minister with responsibility for Wellbeing I believe this collaboration between Healthy Ireland, the HSE and Creative Ireland which seeks to explore how creative arts can promote and sustain mental health and wellbeing is an excellent initiative at an important time.

"The focus on older people in this event is timely and appropriate, after all, they are members of our communities, our friends and our family members that we know are being particularly affected during this pandemic. There is increasing evidence that the creative arts can contribute to a more holistic approach to promoting good health and improving quality of life for people of all ages. I look forward to hearing how our colleagues in health and creativity are already working together and look forward to strengthening the connections between the two programmes."

The panel discussion will be led by Irish Times journalist Jennifer O'Connell and will include contributions from:

  • Dr David Robinson, Consultant Geriatrician, St James's Hospital
  • Kate O'Flaherty, Head of Health and Wellbeing, Department of Health
  • Dr Denise Rogers
  • Bridget Deevy, Arts Programme, Age & Opportunity
  • Dominic Campbell, Co-founder, Creative Ageing International

The event is based on a successful event run by the Creative Ireland Programme and Healthy Ireland in March which explored the value of creativity in health to mental wellbeing outcomes more generally.

Vitamin C: The positive effect of creativity on wellbeing in older people will be held on 21st July 2020 10.30-12.00. To register please visit:

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