Project information

Creativity and Recovery Through the Arts

CoolTan Arts exists to inspire well-being, creativity & recovery through the arts, for a diverse range of people experiencing mental distress, to empower individuals to reach their full potential & become part of the wider community.

We provide creative workshops with professional outcomes.

The workshops are ongoing.

Charity information

CoolTan Arts

CoolTan Arts logo
  • Need


    Mental health issues debilitate thousands in Southwark, sometimes leading to death. Poverty is preventing access to high quality professional workshops
    CREATIVITY AND RECOVERY THROUGH THE ARTS will deal with problems such as:
    • lack of opportunities
    • social isolation
    • breaking down stigma and self-stigma of MIH
    • low self esteem and expectations
    • prevention of crisis
    • The huge number of people not having access to professional facilities, social activities, volunteering opportunities.


    We will provide a range of professional creative workshops including video training & editing, visual arts, creative writing, podcasting, web design, machine sewing & design, sculpture, drawing, painting, as well as a Self advocacy workshop, providing peer support. These will build and develop participants’ life skills, increase their confidence and self-esteem. We will work to eradicate the stigma associated with mental illness enabling people to become a part of the community.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To provide professional creative arts workshops to people experiencing mental ill health.


    » Run ten different workshops with professional outcomes, ie: -art exhibitions -film screenings -participating in fashion shows -with publications

    Success will be in providing the workshops and seeing people move on from them in their life.

    Aim 2

    Social inclusion


    » By actively encouraging participation in the workshops and activities, including volunteering opportunities.

    Success will be the number of people attending workshops who would not have otherwise not had the confidence to come.

    Aim 3

    Breaking down the stigma and self-stigma of mental ill health


    » Public exhibitions, publications, events, activities, workshops

    Success will be in the numbers attending our exhibitions, screenings, events, & the changes in how participants feel about & see themselves.

    Aim 4

    Increasing confidence and self esteem of people experiencing mental distress


    » Workshops and activities leading to positive outcomes

    Success will be seeing our participants move on into volunteering, employment, training and education.

    Aim 5

    Prevention of crisis


    » Providing creative workshops and activities enabling people to participate, socialise, and be included, to express themselves, & find their own voice.

    Success will be in the number of people who will attending our workshops & activities, which will keep them out of hospital, improving their mental health, and well being.

  • Impact


    The project will provide creative opportunities who people who would otherwise not have access to them. We will demonstrate the success by monitoring the number of people attending the workshops, and the impact of their attendance has on their lives. We will do this through monitoring feedback of the participants.


    There is a risk that we do not have enough funding to provide as many workshops as are needed. We have dealt with this by diversifying our funders and looking for new partnerships.


    We will report to donors via email, sending them our monthly e-bulletin, as well as inviting them to our exhibitions, events and activities. Donors will also be informed of the outcomes and success of the workshops.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £4,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £4,000 Art Workshops Materials for 15 art workshops for adults with mental distress
  • Background


    CA is based in East Walworth, ranked as the most deprived ward in Southwark, the 9th most deprived borough in London with the highest recorded incidences of MIH in Western Europe, with the 8th highest MINI (Mental Illness Needs Index 2000) score out of the London Boroughs; Southwark’s need is 17.5% higher than average.


    People experiencing mental ill health on low or no income, upwards from 18 years old who are outside of services.
    We are an all inclusive arts organisation which includes mental and physical disability, reflecting the cultural diversity of the community for and with whom we provide services (2009/10, 67% of participants at CA were from BME communities).
    CA’s track record demonstrates we have enabled numerous people back into the work place, college, volunteering and the wider community.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We're user-led with a 24 year track record of providing innovative & creative workshops & activities for those experiencing mental ill health, promoting social inclusion, reducing isolation and loneliness, &improving the quality of people’s lives. We promote positive mental health & wellbeing by reducing the stigma associated with mental disability, bringing about a change in how participants see themselves, providing people with volunteering, training, education & employment opportunities.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Michelle Baharier

    CEO: ensures there is strong support through partnership, working & networking.

    Olivia Moyes

    Administrative Co-ordinator managing Tutors, overseeing all evaluations for the projects, is there for the welfare of the participants.

    Volunteers (Approx 56 People)

    Help Tutors teach the class, & support participants. Some have attended workshops, now feel better & their volunteering is part of their recovery.

    The Participants Themselves

    Attending the workshops, contributing to their success through consultation & evaluation, ensuring the workshops delivered are what they want.

Coming to CoolTan has enabled me to learn how to live my life

Participant 2