In just four short weeks the world as we know it has turned upside down. The Covid-19 crisis has highlighted the very best and the worst in our society. There has been a huge public response with thousands working in communities and we have also been shown just how important (and often undervalued) our health and social care system is.
We have adapted. Staying in, keeping our distance has become the new normal. Sadly, the crisis has also deepened the isolation felt by many.
We need creativity more than ever. We are likely to see a crisis in physical and mental health last way beyond the virus. Many of us have turned to creativity in this crisis as a preventative measure. Baking, singing, making, writing. Making sense of the world and connecting albeit via a screen.
Some of us have never had so much on offer from the comfort of our own homes. The online world is providing a haven, a window onto the world we are no longer able to move around in freely. For others of us, though, the online world is out of reach, and the move to digital only underlines a disconnect.
The choice although welcome, can sometimes feel overwhelming . When many of us will just want to crawl under a duvet there is a certain amount of pressure to keep ‘doing’, keep ourselves busy, distracted.
We are reimagining our Creativity and Wellbeing week in these strange times. We were blown away by the amount of passion and interest in the festival this year. As we, with our festival partners held events across the country, the ideas, relationships formed and overall recognition of the transformative power of creativity was incredible.
We may not be able to come together in the same way, but we do want to provide a space where people can celebrate the incredible individuals and organisations that work in this sector. There are many people already adapting what they offer for the online world but we know there are also many who carry on working away from digital platforms.
We would like to provide space for two things: If you would like to hold an online event – either adapting something you were already planning or doing something new – you can upload that to the site. But if you just want to share information about what you or your organisation do in relation to arts, health and wellbeing, or if you want to describe work you are doing now to provide analogue, offline creative or cultural activities, there is space for that too.
From 18-24th May we want to bring you all together. We have kept the theme of the week as Positive Futures which is needed more than ever right now.
We are also hoping to host a number of events with the main aim of bringing us all together and offering a space for reflection and mutual support.
Take a look around the site to see how you can get involved.
We will be sharing lots of resources to support you but we also want to learn
Jenni, Neil, Victoria and Hayley x
Image: Maternal Journal, by Hannah Landin, www.maternaljournal.org