Arts, Culture, and Community Mental Health
November 19, 2018
Based on an analysis of dozens of projects, a literature review, and input from both arts and public health‒sector leaders, Tasha Golden identified several domains where arts and cultural strategies are helping drive change in community health outcomes, or to the systems in which public health practitioners operate. Among these domains, what quickly stood out was the impact of creative placemaking on mental health—including stigma; trauma; community-level stress, depression, and substance use disorders; and cultural identity. Here we have taken these four categories as a frame, describing their relevance to public health and providing examples of initiatives that address them. Our findings suggest that infusing community development with creativity and collaboration stimulates the potential for unique mental health benefits that warrant continued investment and exploration.
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