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Improving Wellbeing

“I cried the first time I came, just to be around people in a welcoming place made a big difference.” Participant, Braunstone Town Library

The Cultural Communities Network (CCN) programme was set up to provide opportunities for social, emotional and psychological support through specific Museum, Heritage and Library activity. The aim of this work was to enhance individual wellbeing and collective community resilience.  We were specifically tasked to introduce activity that supported individual wellbeing for people who experience, or are at risk of, experiencing social isolation. With our cultural venues we explored different ways we could support or strengthen the wellbeing of people within our communities.


  • How our projects encouraged positive wellbeing
    • Increased social interaction for people of all ages and backgrounds
    • Introduced a range of new creative and cultural activities
    • Encouraged supportive and caring peer relationships and interactions
    • Introduced new volunteering opportunities that provided a sensing of meaning and appreciation
    • Supported those with greater need through partnership working
    • Offered taster sessions to ease people in gently
    • Regular evaluation to ensure we were meeting need
    • Connections and signposting to appropriate support networks
  • Challenges we want to share
    • Cultural partners unsure about the intricacies of the topic of ‘mental health and wellbeing’
    • Hard to measure the impact of an activity on wellbeing given the amount of influences
    • Volunteers unsure how best to support their community’s wellbeing
    • Concerns about supporting mental health problems
  • How we overcame them
    • We offered awareness training on mental health and wellbeing to increase coordinator’s knowledge, skills, and confidence
    • We researched into the specific needs of participants
    • Activities were developed to support any specific issues and reduce the barriers people were facing that were impacting their wellbeing
    • We worked closely with, and signposted to mental health support partners and local voluntary groups within the community which reduced expectations for staff and volunteers
    • Focused on positive wellbeing by encouraging the Five Ways to Wellbeing
  • Five Ways to Wellbeing

    The evidence base for wellbeing supported by the NHS and Mind says that building five actions into our day-to-day lives is important.  The five actions known as the Five Ways to Wellbeing are:

    • Connect with other people
    • Be physically active
    • Pay attention to the present moment
    • Keep learning
    • Give to others

    Our cultural organisations encouraged these actions by offering a range of cultural and creative activities in a relaxed and friendly setting

  • Be inspired by our wellbeing case studies