Our work compliments the NHS core provision, encompassing 115 healthcare facilities over a range of 2,500 sq miles and serving over 500,000 citizens, half of whom reside in Aberdeen itself. Our Foresterhill Campus, the region’s main hospital base, has a daily estimated footfall of 20,000 people.
For almost 30 years we have worked to create a uniquely positive, calming and welcoming environment in our local hospitals and clinics. We now hold the largest arts in health care collection in Scotland, with stewardship of 4,500 art works, and work collaboratively with patients, staff, and visitors to enhance facilities with a combination of artwork, colour, signage, and words.
Recent changes to the Service Level Agreement that GHAT has with National Health Service Grampian has strengthened our collaborations, however our funding has been significantly reduced and we are now seeking to build our funding base and become sustainable through a combination of public and private sponsorship, and Trust and Foundation grants.
Current Priority Projects
In 2014, GHAT will be opening the UK’s first purpose-built hospital art gallery. Known as ‘THE SUTTIE SPACE’, and made possible by a local benefactor, the new gallery will add a new dimension to our work locally in Aberdeen.
THE SUTTIE SPACE will provide:
- A permanent venue providing a welcoming, well-designed leisure/meeting area for all hospital users
- An exhibition programme (including art/medical/science related themes) with informal talks and lectures
- Open Public access to this unique and interesting resource
- A mix of ‘drop-in’ features and facilities including additional creative sessions (currently offered by GHAT at Woodend & Roxburghe in the successful ArtRoom projects)
- A distraction for patients from the stress of illness
- A quiet non-clinical space for reflection with family and friends which is neither a waiting area or a cafe
Funding needed for: displays, wall hangings, fixtures, and signage
For the last six years GHAT has been developing and running patient-centred ArtRoom sessions, lead by professional artists who serve as creative guides for participants. These sessions give patients the chance to express themselves in a non-clinical forum, and provide them with a sense of release and a sense of purpose independent of their illness or disability. Our current ArtRoom projects are placed in palliative care and acute rehabilitation units at three different sites in Aberdeen. Initial scepticism has led to huge support for these schemes by patients and staff alike and, based on their success, we are now developing new projects for oncology, the children’s hospital, and dementia patients.
Funding need for: art supplies, art books, patient art display area, session leaders
As expected from such a large collection, there are many costs associated with assuring that our artistic assets are properly stewarded and maintained. As we cover such a large region, display costs such as framing, transportation, and set-up are also a large expenditure.
Funding needed for: repairs, mounting and framing, cataloguing, storage, transport, displays, and digital labelling for improved tracking and archiving
Who Benefits from this Grant?
GHAT’s Priority Projects have comprehensive benefits across the healthcare spectrum. Everyone in the community will eventually spend time in a hospital or clinic either as a patient or visitor, and even under the best of circumstances, the hospital environment can be a source of anxiety. GHAT softens this environment with calming design, contemplative and entertaining original art, and participatory programmes. Major benefits include:
- Aiding in patient rehabilitation and wellbeing
- Easing hospital anxiety for patients, family and friends
- Innovative therapy option for health care professionals (dementia, head injuries, etc…)
- Encourages community pride in health care facilities
- Brings the community into health care facilities for events and showings
- Programmes for both child and adult patients, with visiting family interaction encouraged
- Professional opportunities for local artists and local art school graduates
Monitoring & Evaluation
At GHAT we continually assess our service through a mix of feedback from patients and health care professionals, project questionnaires, and public comments. We recently completed an evaluation of ArtRoom using inputs from patients and staff, to measure its effectiveness in complementing medical therapies and impact on the healing process. GHAT is creative in using their resources in innovative ways to assure maximum benefit for the health care community.