A new report, published by Arts for Health (Manchester Metropolitan University) on Thursday 12 February 2015, reveals that engaging with the arts and culture generally has a positive long-term effect on health and wellbeing.
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Local government and the NHS have important roles in building confident and connected communities as part of efforts to improve health and reduce inequalities. The project ‘Working with communities: empowerment evidence and learning’ was initiated jointly by PHE and NHS England to draw together and disseminate research and learning on community-centred approaches for health and wellbeing. This report presents the work undertaken in phase 1 of the project and provides a guide to the case for change, the concepts, the varieties of approach that have been tried and tested and sources of evidence.
Community Matters conducted a two year investigation involving our members and the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) to understand and explain the contribution of community-based multipurpose voluntary organisations to maintaining and building good levels of formal and informal political participation in otherwise deprived areas. This report looks at the research and how our members contribute to that local culture of connectedness, social action, and political self-confidence.
Worker cooperatives are a powerful tool for economic and community development. This resource describes their role in creating a more just economy. It provides an overview of the benefits of the cooperative form, with examples of existing cooperatives and quotes from worker-owners. The resource also describes current initiatives to develop cooperatives by nonprofits, as well as government initiatives to spur the growth of the sector.
This report provides an overview of the GLADS project, the main messages that came out of it and the key conclusions. The main purpose of the report is to work as a general record of the Good Lives and Decent Societies (GLADS) seminar series, not as a summary of each and every presentation. It has been written to give a flavour of the events, not a blow-by-blow account. It is principally aimed at a policy and practice audience, and more generally for anyone interested in the wellbeing debate. GLADS was designed to stimulate multi-disciplinary collaboration between academics, policy makers and practitioners. It aimed to increase understanding, facilitate the sharing of learning and generate new insights into how to embed the multi-faceted notion of societal wellbeing and social progress into decision-making to enable everyone to live a good live in a decent society.
This briefing paper introduces the approach to wellbeing assessment being developed and applied by Wellbeing and Poverty Pathways in its three-year research project in Zambia and India. This is a revised and updated version (original April 2011). Key elements of the approach are: • A multi-dimensional model of wellbeing: Wellbeing is made up of seven domains that span material, relational and personal factors • A new concept of Inner Wellbeing: Subjective perspectives focus on 'Inner Wellbeing': what people feel and think they can do and be • An integrated, mixed method approach: Measures of how people are doing objectively complement Inner Wellbeing assessment. Qualitative data and reflection balance quantitative measures and analysis
Measuring what matters is one of the six Principles of the Happy Museum Project. We suggest that counting visitor numbers tells us nothing about the quality of their experience or our contribution to their wellbeing. Museums are adept at storytelling, evaluation reports which speak of transformational experiences for individuals as a result of museum activity are legion. Qualitative research has been used by museums as effective advocacy, often influencing the hearts and minds of decision makers at local level. However, we think that quantitative evidence that robustly uncovers cause and effect is more likely to influence policy makers. So with funding support from Arts Council England we asked Daniel Fujiwara from the London School of Economics to measure and value people’s happiness as a result of visiting or participating in museum activity. This paper is one of a handful of studies that have applied robust quantitative methods on large national datasets to give us a better understanding of the impact of culture on people’s lives. By finding that the individual wellbeing value of museums is over £3,000 a year, the report makes a strong case for investing in museums. It also identifies what makes people more likely to visit museums, giving some direction into where that investment might be best placed. It sits alongside our qualitative research which digs into how museums make a difference.
Café Conversations are an easy-to-use method for creating a living network of collaborative dialogue around questions that matter in service of the real work. Conducting an exciting Café Conversation is not hard- it’s limited only by your imagination! The Café format is flexible and adapts to many different circumstances. When these guidelines are used in combination, they foster collaborative dialogue, active engagement and constructive possibilities for action.
The Center of Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the International Youth Foundation (IYF) have released a groundbreaking tool, The Global Youth Wellbeing Index, which measures and compares the quality of life for youth in 30 countries. Representing nearly 70 percent of the world’s youth population, the Index measures wellbeing in six domains: citizen participation; economic opportunity; education; health; information and communications technology; and safety and security. The Index is the first of its kind to gather and connect youth-related data to assess and compare the state of young people around the world. It will help policy, society, and business leaders collectively make smarter investments in youth programming, encourage a coordinated approach to planning policies, and help elevate youth issues to the top of the global agenda. Although youth ages 10 to 24 comprise a quarter of the global population, they remain an underutilized source of innovation, energy, and enthusiasm. In fact, nearly half of the youth worldwide are under- or un-employed. Yet, at a time when policy and investment decisions to address these challenges are increasingly data driven, existing data on youth development and wellbeing are often fragmented, inconsistent, or nonexistent.
Children’s well-being is a key dimension of sustainable development and social resilience; it is about our present and our future. It requires recognition as a central building block of the European policy agenda. In Europe we do not invest enough in our children. The European Union does not have a children’s policy- nor do many countries. Children have weak or no political representation and most countries and institutions do not offer children and young people the opportunity to have their voice heard and participate in decision-making. Children and youth are particularly hard hit by the financial insecurities in present day Europe – their future is at stake. But we should not continue as in the past and we do not need more of the same. Most societies are not creative and daring enough in affecting changes for the well-being of children. We require a vibrant debate on what childhood means at the beginning of the 21st century. We need to radically shift our mindsets and transform how we think about children, learning, health, education and society. We are advocating for a paradigm shift that will: - Consider children as competent partners, nurturing personal responsibility more than compliance - Understand learning not only as a cognitive, but as an integral process with many dimensions. - Move from disease and treatment centred healthcare to promoting health and well-being. - Move from standardized education to child centred education. - Move from sectoral to systemic solutions in policy and society. There is no policy maker that does not underscore the sentenced “children are our future – we must invest in them”. Yet the action that is needed rarely follows, despite the negative economic and social consequences for individuals, communities and society at large.