Identifying relevant case studies targeting health and wellbeing in the city of Valencia
The MESOC project aims to propose and verify a model for measuring the social impacts of cultural policies related to 3 crossover themes (Health and Wellbeing, Urban and Territorial Renovation and People's Engagement and Participation) in 10 European city pilots.
Valencia has been selected as a build-up laboratory for Health and Wellbeing. This methodology consists in establishing a policy dialogue with public officials and top or middle managers in charge of culture at the city level, to define a suitable group of ongoing projects and initiatives, with the aim of identifying and proposing indicators to measure the societal impacts of those activities.
Therefore, the University of Valencia has already started a collaboration with Las Naves, the innovation centre of Valencia City Council, to identify various cultural initiatives in the city which aim to improve citizens' health and wellbeing.
Through this joint effort, the first set of projects has been already identified to observe the dynamics and factors in play in those cultural initiatives targeting health and wellbeing.
The first selected programme is Receta Cultura, del centro de salud al museo, promoted by the Regional Ministry of Public Health and Las Naves. Receta Cultura is a pilot project that aims to improve the wellbeing of lonely people and people affected by physical inactivity. The project consists in prescribing groups guided tours of museums from health centres. Six cultural spaces in the city with different ownerships have participated in the launch, where the 12 free visits adapted to the public have taken place during the first months of 2020.
Another interesting project is Museus per la Salut. Records de festa al Museu Faller de València. The project aims to stimulate the long-term memory of Alzheimer's patients with the memories of the Fallas festival. The guided visits are supported by the retired Fallas artists and by the specialist staff's technical and scientific support. In this case, the experience has been based on the use of the cultural resources of the Museu Faller de València to generate wellbeing through the stimulation of long-term memory in people in the early stages of Alzheimer's. The project has been made possible thanks to the collaboration of Las Naves, Museu Faller, Universitat de València, AFAV (Asociación de Familiares de Enfermos de Alzheimer de Valencia) and the Gremi d'Artistes Fallers.
Finally, we would like to mention Caixa del Records. Memòries d'una vida, a project promoted by the Ethnology Museum of Valencia. This initiative aims to improve the quality of life of people with dementia. The evocation of personal memories and lived experiences are stimulated through sessions with objects of the museum heritage collection. The project encourages interpersonal relationships and the cognitive abilities of people with dementia. For the development of this project, the museum has been advised by specialists in the psychology of aging.
Image copyright: photo from the first meeting between the members of Econcult - University of Valencia and Las Naves. © Econcult