Arts and Creativity

What do we mean by Creative Health?

Creative Health is an approach to address Health and Wellbeing through engagement in creative activities such as dance, drama, visual art, film making, music or puppetry to name a few! There are many benefits of the approach in terms of our children and young people here in the North East and North Cumbria.

The Ofsted framework for personal development states: 
[Paragraph 291]. The curriculum provided by schools should extend beyond the academic, technical or vocational. Schools support pupils to develop in many diverse aspects of life. The personal development judgement is used by inspectors to evaluate the school’s intent to provide for the personal development of all pupils, and the quality with which the school implements this work.  

The Child Health and Wellbeing Network strive to support creative health projects.

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Who are we?

The Child Health and Wellbeing Network's (CHWN) brings together people from all sectors across the region, such as health, education, local authorities and the voluntary and community sector, to work with children, young people and their families to make sure our work is more able to support them and have a positive impact.

We are proud to be part of a small but growing network in the North East and North Cumbria that plans to make a real difference to children’s services.

Join the Child Health and Wellbeing Network

Arts and Creativity Advisor

Martin Wilson MBE is the Child Health and Wellbeing Network's  Arts and Creativity Advisor

Martin has worked in arts and culture in North East England for over 25 years. He is the Director of TIN Arts in Durham. TIN Arts delivers activities across the North East and their vision is to create a world in which everybody has access to the arts. They hope to achieve this by removing barriers and increasing access to high-quality dance and performing arts. Martin started working with the Child Health and Wellbeing Network in 2019 as part of the STAR project. He is now in his second year as Arts & Creativity Advisor to the network. 

Connect with Martin 

Arts and Creativity Advisor Arts and Creativity Advisor

Connect with the CHWN Arts and Creativity Advisor 

The Chris Drinkwater award for Creative Health in Primary Schools

What is the Chris Drinkwater Creative Health Award?

The Child Health and Wellbeing Network and Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums  have created the award that is to recognise Creative Health projects in key stages 1 & 2 in a school setting that:

  • have been used to enhance the Relationships and Health Education (RHE) curriculum.
  •  that link to pupils’ personal development

The award comes with a financial prize and award for the best Creative Health projects.

Who can apply?

  • We are targetting this opportunity into settings in more deprived communities and where socioeconomic and health inequalities are most prevalent.
  • schools that have created or are planning a creative health project to enhance pupils’ Relationships and Health Education (RHE) curriculum and personal development,
  • creative organisations already working within schools.

Apply now!

Creative Health Application form (phase 2) QR code     Creative Health Application form link

Apply for the next Chris Drinkwater Creative Health in Primary Schools awards now!

In the beginning

The first awards event happend in September 2023 where each of the winners received funding for their schools/organisation - find out more about the winners and their projects in our brochure.

Future vision

We are now looking to build on our foundation year of these awards with more amazing creative health projects within primary schools across the North East & North Cumbria

And the winners are ... 

Creative arts brochure cover

Watch the 2023 Awards

The Creative Health Award ... meet some of the team

Read more about some of the team who have worked of the project.

Professor Chris Drinkwater CBE, FRCGP, FFPH(Hon), FRSA was an inner-city GP in Newcastle for 23 years and he is now an emeritus Professor of Primary Care Development at Northumbria University.

Chris led the establishment of HealthWORKS Newcastle as a City Challenge project in the early 1990s. He chaired Ways to Wellness, a charitable foundation established to deliver social prescribing at scale through a social impact bond in Newcastle upon Tyne, and led on Well Newcastle Gateshead, a Well North pathfinder with a focus on arts and health for all.

He was also a Director of the West End Schools Trust (8 inner city primary schools in Newcastle upon Tyne). Along the way he has been variously, President and Public Health lead for the NHS Alliance, Deputy Chair and Chair of the Philanthropy Committee for Northumberland, Tyne & Wear Community Foundation, and the Sir Roy Griffiths/Age Concern/RCGP Prince of Wales, Educational Fellow for Older People.

Chris is also our previous Arts and Creativity Lead on the Child Health and Wellbeing Network and when he stood down from the role the Network established the Chris Drinkwater Awards to acknowledge his generous contribution to the network and his passion for Creative Health, especially with primary school-aged children.

Heather has always had a passion for arts since she was a child. She joined the NHS in 1992 and as the Programme Lead for the Child Health and Wellbeing Network has encouraged progress alongside Chris Drinkwater into its founding commitment to Arts and Creativity as a cross cutting theme. This has included establishing partnerships with colleagues from Northern Ballet, attracting funding into network arts initiatives, creating a new Musical focused newsletter and the development of an Arts and Creativity Advisor role. Heather was delighted to take on the Executive Lead role for Arts and Creativity when Chris Drinkwater stepped down – but admits that they are very big shoes to fill!

Heather Corlett

Jade has worked in the role of Admin and Support for the Child Health and Wellbeing Network since 2022, previously Jade worked for Local Authorities and Charities. She is currently studying for a BSc in Psychology  as part of the course Jade has carried out a research project based around creative personalities and parenting styles. 

She has been involved in dance and performing arts from a young age and has run a successful dance school for the last 6 years in North Tyneside, alongside her full-time employment on the Network.

With Jade's interest and experience the network is delighted to have her contribution to arts and creativity projects including the South Tee Arts Project (STAR) and The Chris Drinkwater Creative Health in Primary School Awards; Jade led in designing, arranging and delivering alongside the network’s Programme Lead.

Jade continues her work making great connections with others in the Creative Health sector, to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of Children and Young People in the North East and North Cumbria.

Jade W .jpg

Kate Swaddle is the Executive Headteacher of two schools, in Gateshead. Prior to this appointment, she was Deputy Headteacher and SENCO at a school in North Tyneside, with a high percentage of SEND, Education Health Care Plans and Pupil Premium.  

Having trained in an NHS profession, before moving into teaching - she is aware of the benefits that multi-disciplinary team working brings, across all sectors. She was seconded as Education Advisor to the NENC CHWB Network, throughout 2021-2022, supporting the network to deliver on several projects including epilepsy – a strand of the Children and Young People’s Programme. She also worked in collaboration with the National Institute of Health and Care Research on the ‘Research into School’ project.  

In addition to this, Kate has supported the delivery of the early rollout Early Career Teaching programme, for University College, London -acting as a facilitator for the North East Teaching School Partnership. Having attained the NASENCO and NPQH awards, she is well placed to help children and young people to overcome their barriers to learning

Wendy Kelly is the lead for children and young people’s emotional well-being for South Tees Public Health. As well as having a system-wide remit she has responsibility for a front-line service delivering early help within educational settings to improve the resilience of children and young people.

Wendy has had a varied and interesting career in local government ranging from community development to policy and performance prior to a period of 20 years in children’s services and 8 in public health. During this time, she has led many transformational programmes supporting education and health outcomes.

She is passionate that all children and young people have the very best support, education, and opportunities to enable them to enjoy their lives and be happy. She is a governor of a primary, secondary, and special school.

Wendy has collaborated on many projects and initiatives with the NENC CHWB Network and is Chair of the Network Systems Engagement Group.

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The work so far:

  • Delivered specific NHS England pieces of work for children Partnership bids to access new funding
  • Developed advisor roles to influence our work from the broad system across system membership - now with over 2000 members signed up
  • Held events to share good practice 
  • Produced a quarterly newsletter, weekly update and social media presence 

One of the Child Health and Wellbeing Network's key cross cutting themes is art and creativity, this has led to them creating an awards programme in honour of their former Arts and Creativity Executive Lead, for primary schools; The Chris Drinkwater Creative Health in Primary Schools Awards.

The network has always promoted work in the creative arts one example is The South Tees Arts Project (STAR), an innovative school-based project to access to the arts for people living in areas of South Tees with levels of deprivation and improve health and wellbeing S.T.A.R. - resources for sharing - TIN Arts

Our vision

In the North East and North Cumbria, we believe all children and young people should be given the opportunity to flourish and reach their potential, and be advantaged by organisations working together. 

How to apply for the next set of the Chris Drinkwater Creative Health Awards

The Creative Health Quality Framework

The Creative Health Quality Framework outlines a set of principles which underpin good practice. It looks at how these principles might be adopted by everyone involved in Creative Health and explores how they might be applied to practice to
support the best possible experience and health outcomes for participants.

Accessibility tools