Making it Together: An evaluative study of Creative Families, an arts and mental health partnership between the South London Gallery and the Parental Mental Health Team


Author(s):*Listed Alphabetically
Not listed

Year of Publication:
2015

Publisher(s):
South London Gallery

Publication Type:
Report

Abstract:

Creative Families is an innovative early-intervention arts programme for parents experiencing mental health difficulties and their children aged under-five in Southwark. It is funded by Guys and St Thomas’s Charitable Trust as part of their strategic priorities to support projects with benefits for mental wellbeing which include an arts component, encourage the involvement of individuals in their own health, and improve the healthy development of children.

The evaluation of the Creative Families project carried out in this report takes a two pronged approach. The project is evaluated through an innovative partnership between the Department of Health & Population at The Institute of Psychiatry, and Goldsmiths, University of London, who each provide their assessment of the mental health impact of the project upon participants, but more importantly their qualitative impressions of the project as it unfolded. The project is a pilot in this kind of collaboration, aiming to establish an innovative transferable model for working with vulnerable families.

The report details the measured results of the project as found by the Institute of Psychiatry, who then outlined conclusions from the data about positive mental health impacts of the project in reducing depression, stress, and anxiety and increasing feelings of self-efficacy in participants. Goldsmiths, University of London also discussed their results from project evaluation, focusing on the relational experience of collaboration, care and co-production which have characterised the project instead of solely on its outcomes and measured impacts. Their qualitative account of the project process communicates a qualitative sense of the partnership and multi-level dialogue and commitment that made its implementation possible. It also communicates the participants’ experience of taking part, and the narrative and aesthetic forms that emerged out of the process of participation.

Both partners agree that more projects like Creative Families need to be conducted to allow for further in-depth observation and evaluation of such initiatives as they are carried out, so as to characterize the nature of the relationships formed among project partners, participants, artists and other project staff, and to discern from qualitative and quantitative outcomes the nuances of efficacy of an early-intervention arts model for mental health.



Evidence Type: Non-Randomised Evaluation

Main Focus: Mental Health

Research Purpose: Outcome Evaluation

Context: Community

Access Type: Free Download

APA Citation:

South London Gallery. (2015). Making it Together: An evaluative study of Creative Families, an arts and mental health partnership between the South London Gallery and the Parental Mental Health Team. London: South London Gallery.