- Community associations
- Social services
Presentation of Music and Health Resource
Hi. I’m Rebecca Barnstaple. I am the manager of Community Initiatives Research and Innovation here at Chigamik Community Health Center. I’m also a post-doctoral research fellow at The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation at the University of Guelph and I am very excited to welcome you to this music and Health Resource.
Like many of the people you’re going to see in these videos, I wear many hats, besides the two things I already shared with you. I’m also a dance therapist, and I work in the field of dance and health.
I have been offering programs here at Chigamik for almost eight years for people with Parkinson’s and movement disorders. I was invited to direct this resource based on my experience in the field of dance and health and as many of you probably realize, dance and music are so in meshed and have long histories in many cultural practices associated with health and well-being.
One of the things that you will also see throughout this resource is the idea of health itself is a very multi-dimensional thing. People will be talking about not only physical health but mental health and well-being, social connectedness. These ideas are really difficult to separate and when we think about artistic and holistic practices, these are ways that we can address health in a multi-dimensional way. So music-based and arts-based resources are really gaining visibility and traction as ways of approaching some of the most urgent health crises of our time.
You are going to see videos from people who are researchers, practitioners, therapists, community members, people who are doing community engaged work. And you will see that many of the folks who are going to share with us do many of those things at the same time and also separately.
On Health, Social Prescription, and the Arts
More than just the absence of disease or helping people medically recover from illness, health is more and more understood to be broadly defined as helping people access a sense of thriving and well-being, and this is often connected to finding meaning in the activities that we engage in.
One of the things that we’ve started doing here at Chigamik that is really linked with a lot of these music and health initiatives is social prescribing. Social prescribing is a pathway for clinicians, whether they’re doctors, nurses, social workers, mental health workers, to refer people to non-clinical services so it it creates a path for people to access things in the community that can help contribute to that sense of well-being thriving and meaning.
Many of the best examples of social prescribing programs are related to arts and health.
There’s a a wonderful program called “Arts on Prescription” and several of the initiatives that you’ll hear about in this resource have a social prescribing element. I’m very excited because here at Chigamik, we’re actually launching into a partnership with SingWell which several of the people that you’ll hear from are involved, in which is the creation of a health choir for people with COPD and breathing disorders and their Care Partners.
The other thing that’s exciting about that and several of the other initiatives that we’re sharing is not only the provision of a new program and service for people that can contribute to their sense of health and wellbeing, there is a research component attached to it so we’re able to better understand really what are the impacts for people who are participating in these programs. And also what are the best ways to facilitate access, lower barriers for people to access these programs in the community.
I am very excited to share this resource with you. I have brought together many different colleagues who have also referred other colleagues to share with you a real sense of the diversity of practices associated with music and health. A range of ways that people have gotten into doing this work. I really hope you find it as inspiring as I have. Thank you.Read More +