Researchers at UCL working on the ‘Heritage in Hospitals’ project are beginning a new programme of research funded by a Heritage Lottery award. The research, called ‘Touching Heritage’, aims to widen participation by taking museum objects out to healthcare communities that would otherwise be excluded from museum activities (e.g. neurological rehabilitation and psychiatric wards, residential care homes). One-to-one and group sessions led by facilitators will focus on the cultural, social and natural diversity of the objects in relation to participants’ own health and wellbeing. The experience will be enhanced by touching and handling objects traditionally associated with health and wellbeing, and by discussing how the objects feel, what they are made of or whether they resonate in other ways with participants.
An important aspect of this project is to train volunteers (including existing museum and hospital volunteers) to facilitate object handling sessions that maximize the potential to learn about health and wellbeing and widen participation in cultural and heritage activities. If you are keen to volunteer to work on this project and are happy to undergo training, or have any thoughts or comments, please get in touch with the project team – we’d really like to hear from you.
For more information about the ‘Heritage in Hospitals’ research go to:
Dr Helen Chatterjee, Project Leader: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Linda Thomson, Lead Researcher: email@example.com