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  • Writer's pictureClaire Hilton

NHS Wellbeing Project 2020/21

2020 marked the start of a wellbeing project with Worcestershire Health and Care Trust to look at creative support for all NHS staff working on the frontline, and in the background in the pandemic. Discussions around the project began in June and funding was sought to facilitate visual groups and creative writing sessions for trust staff. I was to facilitate groups in different parts of the county for individuals to attend to get creative and express and reflect on where we find ourselves.

In September it became clear that the groups would be unable to go ahead in a face to face manor so we prepared to deliver remote sessions to staff starting in 'Wellbeing Week' (November 2020).

There is a two main objectives from the sessions:

Primary objectives:

  • Connect staff and give them a place to express themselves

  • Learn new techniques and find and follow tutorials for guidance

  • Fostering creativity and inspiring home practice

Secondary objective:

  • Put together a public facing outcome for the work - format TBC ( this could be a book, an exhibition in a venue or online or some postcards etc).

The staff who take part are under no obligation to submit work to be seen outside of the sessions and staff can also submit work completed outside of the session and completely independently if they wish to.

By the end of 2020 we were able to have run 4 sessions (two within the working day and one evening and one weekend). People who attend are encouraged to try something new and use what they have to just spend some time doing something creative for themselves. There are more sessions planned in the new year - and with this in mind I wanted to write this post today about what we are doing and start to document this along the way. You can see an ongoing gallery of pieces I have created during the sessions HERE

Sessions are ongoing with this section of the project due to end in March 2021.

About the sessions:

NHS staff are given the chance to come together and support each other creative space and process. Some use prompts provided some continue with their own creative endeavours but most importantly of all we do it together, but in a remote way. Group participants can share how they feel and how they have used some time just for themselves. No expectations :) some dial in from work and some on their days off depending on their roles.

In parallel to the creative making sessions with us there was some creative writing work facilitated by a occupational therapist who's work now focusses around wellbeing and self expression.

We hope this has been interesting and gives you some insight into some of the sessions we facilitate.

We know this continues to be a challenging time but creating and being together, but apart continues to support those in risk of isolation and burn out in their roles and day to day life.

Let us know what you think? and want to stay updated then sign up to our newsletter for details of the final project outcome.


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