NAAP’s focus on strengthening international relations continues to offer opportunities to collaborate with long term care organizations around the globe. The relationship with the United Kingdom based National Activity Provider’s Association (NAPA) has resulted in shared resources, education, and networking opportunities for Activity Professionals. An upcoming opportunity is available through the UK’s Arts in Care Homes, which is a project managed by NAPA and funded by The Baring Foundation and The Rayne Foundation.
Arts in Care Homes (AICH) celebrates the creative arts activities that are currently happening in care homes across England. These activities range from everyday creative activities such as flower arranging and cake decorating to large scale arts projects. The goal of AICH is to promote and celebrate existing arts activities while encouraging an increased number of art activities be used every day in all care homes across England.
While this organization is based in the United Kingdom, it offers free resources to all via its website. AICH uses research that proves access to the arts makes care home residents happier and healthier. They believe that residents should be offered a wide range of arts activities daily to enhance their quality of life, wellbeing, and motivation. Check out their website for LOTS of free resources. https://artsincarehomes.org.uk/
One resource is a user-friendly guide to leading arts activities and designing arts projects for care homes. It includes information on different art forms as well as research that can be used when applying for grants and training opportunities. This resource is also helpful if you are participating in “The National Day of Arts in Care Homes” on Sunday, September 24th.
This year, NAPA will be holding a weeklong celebration of arts in care provision, starting on Monday, September 18thand culminating in “The National Day of Arts in Care Home” on Sunday, September 24th. Their goal is to champion, promote and encourage arts engagement in care settings and highlight the health and wellbeing benefits for all involved. The theme for this year is “Reflections”. The Arts in Care Homes website has a free “Get Involved Pack” for help and ideas to participate in The National Day of Arts in Care Homes. Get Involved Pack
For more information and inspiration, be sure to check out their website for examples from their past events, news updates, and a plethora of arts activity ideas. The website’s free art activity ideas are divided into different categories, grouped by art form or by the type of resource e.g. publication, website etc. The website’s online toolkits are all encompassing, practical guides on a specific art subject. They contain all the information you need to lead a successful art activity. You can also search the website by a specific art from, such as creative writing, films, e.g.
The website’s research section is extremely useful and contains different evaluation studies, articles, and publications looking at the benefits of arts activities in care settings. Go to this section if you want to find supporting evidence to demonstrate why your project is of value!
Another useful resource for getting started is “The Treasury of Art Activities for Older People”. This contains 50 arts activities designed for seniors, including step by step instructions on a wide range of arts activities involving dance, drama, poetry, and visual arts. The “Apps” section is handy and lists art apps that can be added to a mobile phone or tablet to help engage residents in creative ways.
You can organize an event or activity for your care setting anytime during the weeklong celebration (September 18-24). Register your activity at https://artsincarehomes.org.uk/nationalday/. Share posts about your activity using #AICH2023. Check out their website for free online events during the week, as well as information on their creative challenge “DrawingOnMemories. I encourage you to help the residents you care for to get involved globally and celebrate the connections and reflections that art creates in our lives.
Colleen Knudson NAAP International Development Director