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Local charity’s week-long wellbeing festival for National Stress Awareness Week!

28 October 2021

Local charity Art & Soul is launching a free week-long festival celebrating the many ways in which creativity can support positive mental health and improve our wellbeing, with funding from Richmond Council’s Civic Pride Fund. 

Taking place during National Stress Awareness Week from 1 to 6 November 2021, the festival will include online and in-person events. The first event is on Monday 1 November with the opening of their virtual exhibition: Cycles of Nature, featuring artwork created by the participants of Art & Soul programmes over the past 18 months. The artwork celebrates the importance of taking time to be creative and reconnecting with nature, which many people experienced during lockdowns. 

Online festival events will include informal art, practical mindfulness, and colour therapy workshops, as well as virtual gallery visits to October Gallery & Turner's House. Two in-person workshops will also take place: one for adults at The Vineyard Community Centre on Tuesday 2 November from 2 to 4pm, and a festival finale for the whole family to attend at ETNA Community Centre on Saturday 6 November from 2 to 4pm.

Visit Art & Soul website to book your tickets.

In-person events will run as relaxed drop-in sessions, with no need to book, but you are encouraged to book now for online activities as places are limited. All are welcomed, especially beginners, to come along and enjoy the wellbeing benefits of art making. 

For more information about the festival and exhibition, and the wider work of Art & Soul, please contact Heather Whitt at heather.whitt@artandsoul.org.uk   

The Civic Pride Fund is available to individuals or groups who want to organise a project or event to improve their local area and deliver more for their local communities. Grants of up to £5k are available to organisations and £1k for individuals. 

Cllr Piers Allen, Lead member for Adult Social Care and Health and Chair of the Richmond Health and Wellbeing Board, said: 

"Art & Soul has used creative activity to improve the emotional wellbeing and mental health of people in Southwest London for more than 20 years! Its work during the pandemic has been outstanding in supporting isolating people, and this was recognised in a 2020 report by the national Culture Health and Wellbeing Alliance to demonstrate how the arts and creativity can support people who are shielding or vulnerable. 

"The festival is a wonderful opportunity to let go of some stress by being creative. Give it a go and experience the benefits to your wellbeing."

Most people feel stressed sometimes, but if stress is affecting your life, there are things you can try that may help. Find out more on the NHS website or contact the Richmond Wellbeing Service. 

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Up to: October 2021

Updated: 28 October 2021