Newry set to benefit from £600k arts investment

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info@newrytimes.com
Wednesday, January 25th, 2017
Community
A new £600,000 funding programme will improve the health and wellbeing of young people by creating custom-made arts projects which will give a voice to them through drama, music, visual arts and literature. arts newryThe Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the Public Health Agency (PHA) are making the joint investment over the next three years, working with a wide range of providers to promote the emotional health and wellbeing of young people. ‘ARTiculate’, the Arts Council’s Young People & Wellbeing Arts Programme, will work in partnership with community organisations to deliver tailored arts projects to groups of young people across Northern Ireland. The first 15 projects to benefit from the programme were announced at an event at Stormont earlier this week. They include Newry-based Magnet Young Adult Centre’s Arts and Minds project which will receive £14,650 for a mental health and wellbeing arts initiative that will use the arts to help young people cope with everyday challenges and address the stigma associated with help-seeking behaviour. Dunlewey Addiction Services (NI) will also receive £11,800 for a visual arts programme which will engage with 60 young people living in Dungannon, Newry, Craigavon, Banbridge and Armagh. Minister for Health, Michelle O’Neill, endorsed the programme saying, “The arts as a public health resource is beginning to be more widely appreciated, and access to the arts for our young people are now more important than ever. “The ARTiculate programme, which supports the Protect Life 2 strategy, will challenge issues such as stigma, prejudice and discrimination associated with mental health and wellbeing, which all too many of our young people face every day.”
Article continues below:
Jan End 2017The creation of the fund follows on from the recent publication of the Health Survey NI 2015/16, which showed 29% of females and 13% of males aged 16-24 had a possible mental illness.
Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented, “The positive links between engagement in the arts and wellbeing are firmly established. The ARTiculate programme is an Arts Council initiative, jointly funded by the Public Health Agency, which aims to increase access to the arts for young people whose health and wellbeing may be at increased risk. “Working together with the Public Health Agency, this new programme will open up opportunities for young people to engage in the arts and the many benefits that brings, promoting self-expression, and developing self-confidence and self-motivation. She added, “Over the next three years we estimate that more than 35 groups will benefit from this programme, working with artists and arts organisations to find positive channels for self-expression, and marking the beginning of a life-long interest in the creative arts.”

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