RSPH and University celebrate arts and health at annual awards

24 November 2015

RSPH and University celebrate arts and health at annual awards

The contribution of the arts to public health was celebrated last week at a prestigious awards ceremony at Portland Place in London.

Now in their eighth year, the Royal Society for Public Health’s Arts and Health Awards, in partnership with Canterbury Christ Church University, recognise organisations and initiatives that draw on the power of music, visual arts, drama and dance to help promote health and wellbeing.

This year, as part of the ongoing remembrance of the First World War, the Awards focused on the role of organisations and initiatives that support the wellbeing of military personnel and their families.

At the ceremony, winners were presented with their awards by former head of the British Army Lord Dannatt, and there were performances from the North London Military Wives Choir.

A research project by the University’s Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health, in conjunction with the Military Wives Choirs Foundation, was given a Special Commendation at the ceremony.

The Military Wives Choir Foundation supports a network of 75 Military Wives Choirs with over 2,000 members, and provides opportunities to sing and enjoy music, enhancing creative ability and improving personal development.

The partnership was commended for their ability to define the positive health impact of singing and being part of a choir. The research showed that 73% members felt a stronger sense of wellbeing since joining a Military Wives Choir, 85% increased their confidence through performing, and 80% noted a positive effect on their health as a result of singing.

Sara Smalley, Trustee of the Military Wives Choirs Foundation, said: "The Military Wives Choir Foundation is delighted to receive this Commendation from RSPH. We knew that Military Wives Choirs were providing fun and friendship, but we were greatly encouraged by results of the research showing the deeper health and wellbeing impact. Involvement in the RSPH Awards has provided us with a spotlight to herald the positive health benefits of being a member of a Military Wives Choir. MWCF provides support and services to women in the military community wherever they are based, across a network of 75 choirs.”

For more information of the awards visit the RSPH website.

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Last edited: 30/06/2016 09:04:00