Published on Wednesday 28 February 2024

Arts Council Malta (ACM) last week organised the first Culture and Well-Being Forum at the Salini Resort, with artists and creative practitioners engaging with the day’s programme.

Three panel discussions were held, addressing a vast range of issues, each of which reflect the overarching principles laid down by Strategy 2025, embracing culture for the well-being of all.

The link between culture and well-being

The forum kicked off with a panel discussing the link between culture and well-being, including definitions, intersectoral collaborations, policy and sustainability, which are all principles at the heart of our cultural and creative communities.

The panel explored the need to strategise and implement this policy through meaningful actions and outcomes. Participants and guests discussed the importance of enabling effective multi/cross/inter-sectoral networks that will help us set the stage for a fostering of connections and synergies, and explored ways to set the stage for implementation.

Supporting the formation and development of Health Care Professionals and Artists

The second panel on the day focused on creative projects that address health and well-being, whether in the community or in care settings, highlighting the need for cross-sectoral collaboration involving people with different backgrounds that span the arts, healthcare, management and others.

The panel discussed the need for a shift in the current healthcare and well-being model, as well as the skills and preparation needed for this shift to happen, together with the adjustments required in order to create safe and effective projects and/or programmes and maximise the positive impact.


Contexts, spaces and the referral process

The final panel of the day focused on the creation of an art, culture and well-being platform as a large web of creative and empowering connection that touches different communities and the individuals within.

Participants discussed ways how this tool can be utilised to bring about a supportive health mechanism that facilitates healthcare provision and promotes the continuity of care with the aim of creating a new vision malleable to the exigencies of living in today’s fast-paced and, at times isolating, world. The panel also touched on ways how to utilise the value of arts and culture within multimodal art programs that use presence and connection as a way of supporting the individual’s well-being within society.

Culture and well-being - the way forward

The connection between culture and well-being aligns with the mantra of Strategy 2025, namely Care, Create, Flourish. This first forum delved deep into the ways ACM is enabling and positioning the sustainable and inclusive growth of Malta’s cultural and creative sectors as being integral to the well-being of all, paving the way for this relationship to be strengthened holistically and comprehensively in policy directions, funding and investment.