Overcoming Burnout through Arts. A Cultural Prescriptions Pilot Project and Research

cultural prescriptions for burnout
Overcoming Burnout through Arts. A Cultural Prescriptions Pilot Project and Research
Cluj Cultural Center
Health and Well-Being

Cluj Cultural Centre is organizing this autumn in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, a pilot version of the cultural prescriptions, in the form of creative workshops addressed to people with burnout symptoms.

Burnout is a serious condition that affects more and more people. The Mental Health America (MHA) in a study conducted in July 2020 reported that 75% of workers have experienced burnout, and 40% of those polled said it was a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic. The current circumstances affect our way of interacting, working, and living, in general. 

Cultural Prescriptions is a type of initiative that encourages people who deal with different medical conditions to overcome their negative states and to improve their health and well-being by using arts. Various models of cultural prescriptions were successfully tested in other countries, such as the UK. During the autumn of 2020, the Cluj Cultural Centre implements a pilot of cultural prescriptions, offering participation in a series of specially designed creative workshops to a group of people with burnout symptoms.

Built on practical exercises using various artistic techniques, the workshops contribute to the development of imagination and emotional intelligence, stimulate the ability to express, reduce anxiety and cultivate self-esteem with the final purpose to help people overcome their burnout with time. 

The design of the creative workshops and the accompanying research is the result of the collaboration of experts from the fields of arts and health from the Cluj Cultural Centre, Create.Act.Enjoy, The School of Public Health, Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca and Bruno Kessler Foundation. The impact on participants’ well-being will be measured through quantitative and qualitative techniques by the same team of researchers, and the results will be used as an argument for scaling up this type of initiatives.

A series of cultural prescriptions initiatives are implemented in 2020-2021 under the European project Art and Well-being, which explores the relation between art, health and well-being. The project is implemented by the Cluj Cultural Centre (RO), BOZAR - Centre for Fine Arts (BE), Maribor City Gallery (SI) and Bruno Kessler Foundation (IT) and is supported by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union.