Art project at Royal London Hospital encourages communication across the ages

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Together with Art Night Legacy and Vital Arts, ArtSocial are supporting a series of art workshops to encourage communication and offer support between children and adults staying on different floors in the UK’s busiest children’s hospital.

Based at the Royal London Hospital, which has the highest rate of children living in families on unemployment benefits, artist educator Sam Ayre has created an innovative way for children and adults over 60 to work together.

ArtSocial Foundation has funded three workshops this Spring, 2019, which have inspired communication between different floors within the hospital sharing thoughts and knowledge, as well as stimulating memory for those with dementia.

Adults on the Older Person’s Care Ward were interviewed about their roles past and present. They were also asked for tips about their former and sometimes current careers. Using signs that mimic the Health and Safety signs in the hospital as visual aids with advice on, this then gave the children the chance to start a conversation with the older generations about what their roles have been over the years.

Dora, a mother of 9, who is staying in the Older Person’s Care Ward, advised: “Don’t be toffee nosed, we’re all the same.” tomorrow you could be in their situation.” While Isabella said: “If you don’t ask the questions, then you’ll never know anything.”


Amy Hutson