Supporting women’s mental health with art

This year we continue to support Hospital Rooms, our charity partner since 2018, who bring world class contemporary artwork to mental health units across the UK to support recovery.

group shot of artists and hostpital rooms briefing in plymouth

From left to right: Natalie (Hospital Rooms), Deap (Seasalt), Niamh (founder of Hospital Rooms), Damian Griffiths, Abigail Reynolds, Tim (founder of Hospital Rooms), Nicola Bealing, Polly (Seasalt), Steve Claydon, Andy Harper

We’re pleased to announce our third project with Hospital Rooms is in collaboration with Livewell Southwest at its Greenfields Recovery Unit which is based on the Mount Gould Hospital site in Plymouth. Livewell is a social enterprise and its mission is to support people to lead independent healthy lives by delivering the right care to people in the right place and at the right time. Seasalt is donating £40,000 to sponsor this exciting project, which will focus on the Greenfields unit for women suffering from severe mental health challenges.

Greenfields is a nine-bed recovery unit offering round-the-clock nursing care and personalised treatment to women with severe and long-standing mental health issues. Some may have spent time in a more secure unit or may be referred to the safe and supportive environment offered by Greenfields because they are finding it hard to function at home. The unit offers music, art and drama therapy as part of the rehabilitation program, and the team couldn’t be happier to embrace this opportunity to transform the space, working hand in hand with artists and service users.

Hospital Rooms has selected six prominent artists to work with on this project; Abigail Reynolds, Andy Harper, Nicola Bealing, Damian Griffiths, Steve Claydon and Emma Talbot. Each artist will bring a unique approach as they are invited to transform the unit from a clinical environment into somewhere inspiring for everyone who uses the space. By working directly with the staff and the service users themselves, both the creative process and the final artworks will complement the work the unit does.

“We were deeply impressed by Livewell Southwest and Greenfields’ commitment to improving the experience of its service users, and the vital support it provides to women with severe mental health problems in Plymouth and the wider Devon areas. By collaborating with artists who represent the wealth of talent in the South West, we have the opportunity to create an empowering and inspirational environment which connects women with their wider community.“
Hospital Rooms, 2019

Andy Harper, Plastic Fox, Oil on linen, 55cm by 48cm, Courtesy of the artist

Andy Harper, Plastic Fox, Oil on linen, 55cm by 48cm, Courtesy of the artist

To start the project Hospital Rooms brought together the artists, unit staff, service users and some of the Seasalt team. By visiting the unit we got a great understanding of the requirements of the artwork in this sensitive environment, and the challenge the artists face – they will now each choose an area they feel connected with to work on. Following the introductions, it was great to see the artists building relationships with all of the people who will be using the space, and the dynamic ideas that started to flow as a result of this collaboration.

Over the next few months a series of artist-led workshops will run at the unit, where the service users, staff and artists will develop their concepts together. By the end of the year, six areas will be transformed, including the psychology room and the outdoor space. The artwork created will bring so much value for everyone at the unit, leaving a legacy for those who move on, inspiring those working and living in the unit every day and welcoming new service users and visitors.

Did you know that 20p from every pair of single Seasalt socks sold goes to charity? This year we have donated £100,000 to our charity partners. Find out more about our charity partners and the other projects we support on our sustainability page.

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