National Arts in Health Week Returns for its 2nd Edition

In Nigeria,

The National Arts in Health Week in Nigeria (NAHWNG) is set for its 2nd edition, taking place from May 8th to 14th May 14th 2023. This week-long event will feature a series of activities and programs highlighting the important role of arts in healthcare and promote its integration into medical practices.

The National Arts in Health Week in Nigeria was founded in 2020 through the support of the Federal Ministry of Health and the United States Consulate, Lagos, Nigeria.

NAHWNG Chair Oyindamola Fakeye, Artistic Director of CCA Lagos, and Director of Special Projects, Arts in Medicine Fellowship, expressed excitement about this year’s event.

“We are thrilled to bring together a diverse group of artists, healthcare practitioners, researchers, and advocates to celebrate the intersection of arts and health. Our goal is to raise awareness about the arts’ benefits in healthcare and inspire new ideas and collaborations in the field,” she declares in a press statement.

This year’s event will feature a range of local and international speakers, including Christopher Bailey, WHO Arts & Health Lead and Founding Co-Director of the Jameel Arts & Health Lab; Dr. Nisha Sajnani, Founder of Arts + Health @ New York University and Founding Co-Director of the Jameel Arts & Health Lab; Dr. Fakunle David, Associate Professor at Morgan State University in the United States; Dr. Bodgan Chiva Giurca, Development Lead of the Global Social Prescribing Alliance; Dr. Taiwo Lateef, Professor of Psychiatry/Psychopharmacology at Ahmadu Bello University and Belinda Holden Managing Director Yinka Shonibare Foundation.

“Commissioning art in a healthcare environment has the power to enhance the well-being and healing process of patients, their families and staff as part of considered building and landscape design, impacting patient outcomes and improving the experience of those using and working in healthcare,”  Belinda Holden Managing Director Yinka Shonibare Foundation says.

In addition to the keynote address, the event will also include workshops, panel discussions, and performances from Global Arts in Medicine Fellows namely singer-songwriter Sinmidele, Julius Agbaje, Kehinde Adenle, The Arts in Medicine Orchestra led by Peter Oluwadare, Nengi Omuku, Co-Founder of The Art of Healing, Malik Afegbua, Founder SlickCity Media and AI Artist, Qudus Onikeku, Multimodal Artiste and Choreographer, Dr. Anette Akinsete, CEO/National Director Sickle Cell Foundation, Kunle Adewale, Founder Arts in Medicine Projects and Member of Steering Committee WHO-Jameel Arts & Health Lab, and many others.

“At WHO, we define health as more than simply the absence of disease and infirmity, but as attaining the highest state possible of physical, mental and social well-being.  Creative expression in all its forms not only contributes to our physical, mental and social well-being, but in fact is an essential part of what it means to be human.  The arts help us cope, help us reconnect to ourselves, each other, and the world around us, but they also quite simply help us celebrate and acknowledge the joy of being alive.” Christopher Bailey, Arts and Health Lead, World Health Organization.

According to Dr. Nisha Sajnani, Co-founding Director, WHO-Jameel Arts  & Health Lab, New York “National Arts & Health Week Nigeria features as part of the Healing Arts global outreach campaign by the Jameel Arts & Health Lab and the World Health Organization. As a call to action for improved health and wellbeing through the arts, the campaign incorporates exhibitions, dialogues, public art interventions, media partnerships, and city/country wide activations, often in partnership with UN and Government Agencies, high-profile cultural institutions, and universities. Past events include a Healing Arts Symposium at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2021), the first Iraq Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale (2021), a Healing Arts Auction Series with Christie’s (2020-present), city-wide activations in London, New York, Jaipur, Paris and Houston, and this year’s historic WHO75 Healing Arts Concert in Geneva. Healing Arts 2023 is produced in partnership with Open Mind Project.”

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