Loneliness Measures Published

The Office for National Statistics is developing new tools to measure loneliness and has published initial analysis to measure the frequency of people’s feelings of loneliness. In 2016 to 2017, 5% of adults in England reported feeling lonely “often” or “always”. Health conditions and social connections play a significant factor in whether people are likely to be lonely: people in poor health or who have conditions they describe as “limiting” were at particular risk of feeling lonely more often.

Guidance on volunteering

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations has produced a set of guidance for charities on engaging with volunteers. Covering issues such as safeguarding, tax and insurance, the guidance offers a comprehensive package of support for organisations working with volunteers.

Live Music Consultation

The Culture Select Committee is running a public consultation on the economic, cultural and social benefits of live music.

The inquiry will look into ticket touting and the decline in grassroots music venues as well as the impact of live music on community wellbeing.

Arts Council strategic review

Arts Council England is inviting suggestions and ideas for what to include in its next ten year strategy.

The public consultation was announced in mid-January and will run through the spring with a draft framework published this autumn and a final strategy announced in 2019.

Music and dementia

A new independent report has brought together a range of evidence for the impact of music on the lives of people with a diagnosis of dementia and identified a “memory bump” derived from engagement with music.

Government Committee investigating arts impact on health and society

The House of Commons Select Committee for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is inviting submissions for an inquiry investigating the social impact of the arts. The inquiry will investigate the ways in which taking part in the arts, cultural activities and sport can have a positive impact on health, community and education.

First systematic review of visual arts and mental health

The What Works Centre for Wellbeing has published the first systematic review looking at the subjective wellbeing outcomes of engaging with visual arts for working-age adults with diagnosed mental health conditions. The research found strong evidence demonstrating that “visual arts activities, of various kinds, can reduce depression and anxiety and increase confidence and self-esteem.”

King’s Fund analysis of public health spending

The King’s Fund has published an analysis of the balance of resources going to public health and declared that “too many local government services that affect the public’s health are facing death by a thousand cuts”.

The research looks at average expenditure by local authorities on public health over the past five years and concludes that that: “when it comes to funding services that impact on the public’s health, central government’s actions show that it is not affording public health the same priority as the NHS.”

Improved wellbeing key reason for participation in creative activity

Voluntary Arts annual survey has found a strong emphasis on mental health as a reason given by participants for taking part in creative activities.

Working with public service commissioners

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations has published a report for arts and cultural organisations which are interested in engaging with public service commissioners.


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