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Amplifying Artscapers event boosts feelgood factor at Storey’s Field Centre





An Amplifying Artscapers event at Storey’s Field Centre celebrated the programmes developed with a growing network of schools and delivered in partnership with family therapy charity Cambridge Acorn Project, Fullscope, and research partners from UCL and ARU.

Organised by Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination (CCI), an arts and well-being charity founded in 2007, the event was a tribute to all the charity’s supporters.

Amplifying Artscapers patron Robert Macfarlane with, from left, Jen McGaley, plant scientist at the Crop Science Centre, University of Cambridge; and Ruth Sapse, director, Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination. Picture: Keith Heppell
Amplifying Artscapers patron Robert Macfarlane with, from left, Jen McGaley, plant scientist at the Crop Science Centre, University of Cambridge; and Ruth Sapse, director, Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination. Picture: Keith Heppell

Patron Robert Macfarlane thanked “everyone who has supported CCI to facilitate more opportunities for children and young people across the county to have precious arts-in-nature experiences, and to share our growing evidence base that this work can be generative for good mental health”.

Robert said: “Looking around this room and hearing about the everyday heroes that change lives in that slow, hard, day to day work – teachers, academics, parents, artists, scientists – this organisation and others like it are joining them, and they become greater in the sum of their meeting. The stories we’ve heard are about relations, of new joinings happening, of growth and goodness and justice emerging from that.”

Amplifying Artscapers celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington, with artwork showing childrens’ depiction of the chalk stream. Picture: Keith Heppell
Amplifying Artscapers celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington, with artwork showing childrens’ depiction of the chalk stream. Picture: Keith Heppell

Headteachers David Aston of Wilburton C of E Primary School and Paul Jones of Hampton College Primary, Peterborough, discussed artscaping being used as a methodology to intervene early to support children’s wellbeing, so children who might sit slightly below the threshold for external mental health interventions could be supported to prevent or avoid issues from escalating.

David said: “Artscaping has had a huge impact on the individual, on children who struggle to self-regulate. It gave those children time to talk and space to explore and be creative with one-on-one time with adults.

Ruth Sapsed, director, Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination, speaking at Storey's Field Centre. Picture: Keith Heppell
Ruth Sapsed, director, Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination, speaking at Storey's Field Centre. Picture: Keith Heppell

“The transformation on individual children has been remarkable and something which, without the capacity-building this project gave us, we wouldn’t have been able to achieve.”

Ruth Sapsed, director, Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination, said: “About 70 people joined us – artists, teachers, parents, volunteers, academics, city and county council community development colleagues.

Amplifying Artscapers Celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington. Picture: Keith Heppell
Amplifying Artscapers Celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington. Picture: Keith Heppell

“The room was filled with hangings from the fantastical forest and artwork created by children in projects across the county.

“It was a joy to see so many connections being strengthened.”

Amplifying Artscapers celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington, with artwork showing childrens’ depiction of the chalk stream. Picture: Keith Heppell
Amplifying Artscapers celebration at Storey's Field Centre, Eddington, with artwork showing childrens’ depiction of the chalk stream. Picture: Keith Heppell


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