Where the Arts Belong is a unique three-year research project, conducted by pioneering care village operator, Belong, and Liverpool’s centre for the contemporary arts, Bluecoat, to effectively embed the arts into new care environments and improve the lives of those with dementia.

The first phase of the project has seen six critically acclaimed artists take up pilot residencies at Belong Crewe to engage customers, staff and members of the wider community in an array of creative workshops, ranging from storytelling and sculpture to music and dance. Completing at the end of June, the residency scheme proved a huge success at the village, with reports that residents are happier and more engaged as a result.

The next stage of the project will involve a series of workshops at the Atkinson in Southport, which will take place from January 2020.

Belong and Bluecoat’s collective aim is to identify and put in place the conditions that best support resonant and meaningful arts engagements of older people in the care village context, in particular those on a dementia journey.

This research will inform practice at Belong’s upcoming state-of-the-art villages in Birkdale and Chester and they will be the first Belong villages to have permanent staff trained in specialist arts provision.

Importantly, the project seeks to contribute to best practice in the care sector and the resulting creative and learning outcomes will be shared with a range of external stakeholders and audiences. The work produced will be exhibited at the Atkinson and the Grosvenor Museum, Chester, running for six to eight weeks at each venue, alongside a number of workshops and symposia events.

Click here to visit the dedicated website to download the report and find out more.