Older people in Newry set to benefit from arts projects

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Friday, November 24th, 2017

The Arts Council of Northern Ireland has announced National Lottery funding and public funding from the Public Health Agency, of over £192,000, for 19 organisations across the region to deliver community-based arts projects benefitting older people. 



The funding is part of the Arts Council’s Arts and Older People’s Programme, a pioneering initiative which aims to promote positive mental health and well-being among older people through engagement with the arts whilst tackling issues of loneliness and isolation. 

The Arts and Older People’s Programme is a Northern Ireland-wide programme established by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland in 2010and are now in partnership with the Public Health Agency and the Baring Foundation.

To date the programme has provided £1.8m funding to community organisations and voluntary groups in the delivery of 137 arts projects to older people.  The programme has been designed to challenge perceptions of what it means to be an older person.   



Accolade Community Association, in Newry, will deliver the musical project, Talents of Accolade, to older people at Newry Arts Centre, Jethro Centre in Lurgan, Bessbrook Community Centre, Crossmaglen Centre and the Brain Injury Foundation Centre. 

Participants will have the opportunity to tap into their creativity, meet new people and develop new skills through playing music and singing.

Lorraine Calderwood, Community Development Officer at the Arts Council, explained how the Arts and Older People’s Programme is making a difference to the lives of older people across Northern Ireland. “Research has proven that engagement with the arts can raise self-esteem, confidence and motivation, as well as aid in relieving stress, worries and also pain.



“The Arts and Older People’s Programme is committed to providing meaningful opportunities for our older people to take part in arts activities, enriching their lives for the better.  The arts have a vital role to play in helping older people find their voice and express the issues which can often affect them on a day-to-day basis, thus promoting positive physical and mental health,” she added.

A new round of Art & Older People’s Programme funding will open early 2018, keep up to date at www.artscouncil-ni.org



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