Artists in Healthcare Manitoba was established in 2001. A provincially funded initiative, this organization aims to enhance and improve the overall healthcare experience for patients, their families and the staff working in hospitals and healthcare settings. Artists in Healthcare is supported by many provincial and municipal cultural organizations and therefore its artistic initiatives are diverse. From intimate performances from the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra for residents, to an Art at the Bedside program, their organization seeks to humanize the sometimes isolating hospital setting and bring the arts into the lives of patients in short and long term care. The result is a celebration and the relief of anxiety and stress by individuals and families facing health concerns.
Artists in Healthcare Manitoba has programming for CancerCare Manitoba, St. Boniface, Health Sciences Centre, Riverview, Misericordia and the Grace Hospitals year round and also serves regional sites at the Brandon Regional Health Centre, Boundary Trails and Bethesda Hospital in Steinbach.They seek to engage professional and student musicians who work with patients and learn the indelible power the arts have for healing.
In 2011, Artists in Healthcare Manitoba was invited to participate in Culture Days Manitoba. For Shirley Grierson, administrator, Culture Days is a perfect fit: "AIHM believes that the arts and music are essential for a healthy life. Our goal is to integrate the arts, in all of their forms-to healthcare, for the benefit of patients, family and staff."
Their first experience with Culture Days Manitoba was a resounding success. Musicians played in Saint Boniface Hospital's Buhler Gallery amidst their latest art exhibition while art created during the Art at the Bedside program was on display in the hospital's atrium for staff, visitor and patient viewing.
In 2012, Artists in Healthcare engaged their audience with spectacular landscape dancing by acclaimed choreographer and dancer Stephanie Ballard in conjunction with individual performances for patients by musicians Keith Price and Lois Gillespie. Their participation and engagement during Culture Days has been consistently positive and they are working hard at creating exciting and interesting programming for the 2013 celebration.
For Shirley Grierson, Culture Days is an important contribution to arts and culture and helps to promote the organization. Culture Days Manitoba is thankful for the continued work Artists in Healthcare Manitoba does for their patients. Indeed, their work is so crucial, one patient remarked, “I just received a cancer diagnosis, but for the 10 minutes I was sitting listening to you play, I forgot.”
For more information, visit www.artistsinhealthcare.com/
-With contributions by Shirley Grierson, Artists in Healthcare Manitoba, Arts and Cultural Industries Manitoba and Michelle Rosner.
- Share This