Mailing List

Arts and Health Programme

Society functions best when art and artists thrive and creativity is nurtured.

Arts and Health Programme

The public health challenges facing Africa are significantly more than anywhere else in the world. With just over 10% of the world’s population, Africa carries a quarter of the global burden of diseases – both communicable and non-communicable. This challenge is further compounded by limited health infrastructures and capacity, poor educational standards, and inadequate governance of the populace.

Significant parts of the disease burden are both preventable and avoidable. Efforts to mitigate and prevent these diseases require the implementation of effective public health interventions including alternative asset-based approaches that are multi-layered, appropriate and relevant to the contextual need of the African people. Arts - is a public health need and its promotion and support, an essential intervention.

Africa is blessed with great artistic assets; people in Africa live their lives with abundant cultural norms and practices – which create valuable artistic capital. The role of the arts as a public health resource is beginning to be more widely understood (Clift, 2012). The recent Ebola crisis and the example set by Lagos State and Nigeria, in implementing and effecting a timely and effective response despite infrastructural challenges further demonstrated the value of creativity and innovation in health with effective mobilisation of the public on preventative activities. There is an increasing body of evidence that the richness of African Arts - Music, dance, visual arts and writing - are now used to support health and wellbeing in a wide variety of settings.  - for prevention of diseases, to support independent living and to meet the physical, mental and social needs of increasing numbers of people requiring long-term care.

Building Collaborative Partnerships for Arts, Health & Wellbeing - Invitation

AAF believes that society is fecund when the creative potential of its people are nurtured. Our considerable artistic reach across the continent based on creative partnership with artists, the general public and stakeholders in industry. Our programmes since inception have broader societal objectives. Youth Empowerment Through Contemporary Art (YECA), LagosPhoto Festival, Art Base Africa, National Art Competition, and our annual programs that engage women in society are examples. AAF is seeking to build on these well-established artistic assets and establish effective partnerships with organisations that have interest and objectives in the use of Arts in promoting and improving health and wellbeing of the African population. Partner organisations can be from broad range of human activities – academic and service institutions, galleries and foundations. We aspire to build capacity.

The overarching goal of the partnership is improve Arts, Health and Wellbeing. Specific objectives include;

  •  Advocacy and raising awareness on the value of arts as a public health resource in  Africa 
  •  Development and implementation of relevant and appropriate arts and health interventions and programmes in Africa – and selected settings
  •  Developing and supporting education, training and mentoring programme for Art, health and wellbeing in Africa
  •  Research and development including evaluation of Arts and Health programme and initiatives to generate knowledge and evidence


We are keen to invite partners and build on this collaboration in Africa. If you are interested, please contact For further discussions.