Creative Awards Scheme: An introduction
Posted by SANE
5th Jun 2019

The SANE Creative Awards Scheme has just been launched across the country and invites people living with mental health conditions and their carers to awaken their creativity and pursue their artistic potential. The scheme offers awards of up to 300 to help people who want to develop their visual arts skills; applications for painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, mixed media and digital media are welcome now, other art forms will be included in the future.

Creative activity relieves stress, improves brain function and mood, and can increase social opportunities and prevent the onset of dementia, but that’s not all. According to the late Elliot Eisner, Professor of Art and Education at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, the arts:

  • Help us say what cannot be said;
  • Celebrate multiple perspectives;
  • Show us that problems can have more than one solution.

My name is Thomas Andrews and it is my pleasure to oversee the scheme here at SANE. With a background in fine art and a passion for making creative endeavour more accessible, I look forward to seeing the scheme grow in the coming months and years, helping many people along the way.

We are all born creative, but over time we can forget this, disconnect from creative pursuits and then start believing that creative expression is for others and not for us. Reconnecting with our innate ability to make, write, paint, sew, sing and play helps us rebalance in ways that start to make us whole again.

We are delighted to be working on this scheme with the Open College of the Arts, the distance learning arm of the University for the Creative Arts.

So get involved, apply, tell others, get them to apply and make creativity a bigger part of your life once more. Find information about the scheme and how to apply here or get in touch with me on 020 3805 1790 or at

*10th to 16th June 2019 is Creativity and Wellbeing Week, a national festival hosted by the London Arts in Health Forum that celebrates the achievements and possibilities when Arts and Health combine. The festival showcases the healing power of the Arts through a vibrant programme of discussion, exhibitions, performance and creative events. Find out more about the Creativity and Wellbeing Week here.

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