The mission of Arty-Folks is to be a leader in driving social change by tackling the root causes to mental ill health through the transformational power of the visual arts and peer support. Our vision is for conversations about emotional well-being will be ‘normal’ and everyday within families and across the wider community. Individuals will feel able to enjoy non-medical support before they become mentally too unwell to cope with daily life.
We inspire adults 18+ of working age who feel at a low point in their lives and who are struggling with diagnosed or self-diagnosed psychosocial mental ill health such as depression, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD etc. as well as more severe and enduring disorders such as psychosis, PTSD, schizophrenia, and personality disorders to bridge the gap between being dependent on statutory services to anchoring and thriving in the community.
Arty-Folks offers a progression-focused and structured visual arts programme combined with 1:1 mentoring and coaching that enables adults of working age to reclaim their confidence, access and sustain new opportunities in the community, and through volunteering move closer to the labour market.
The programme combines visual communication with self-development concepts, thus empowering service users to recalibrate negative self-beliefs leading to increased mental well-being. Experienced artists run art projects using a huge range of media such as drawing, painting, sculpture, ceramics, and printing. Activities are suitable for total beginners as well as experienced artists.
Through bite-sized projects we enable those for whom written or spoken language has ‘failed’ to express their feelings and difficulties and to frame a new way forward.