Arts and Minds and Staying Out present Better Together


Presented by members of ARC’s two flagship creative social prescribing programmes, Arts and Minds (delivered in partnership with Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind) and Staying Out, Better Together is a collaborative arts exhibition that represents the power of creativity and connection.

Bringing together the innovative work of a range of participants from different backgrounds and at varying stages in their wellbeing journey, the exhibition also reflects the distinct nature of each individual.

The pieces in Better Together range from mixed media works, paintings and documentary photography to 3D models, ceramics and textile based crafts. These pieces have been created using new and recycled materials in weekly sessions over the past six months, and are a testament to the artistic skills and ambitions of participants; alongside the local artists who have supported them in developing their talents.

The exhibition has been timed to coincide with Mental Health Awareness Week 2023 (15 – 21 May), Dementia Action Week 2023 (16 – 22 May), and National Conversation Week (23 – 29 May), which aim to bring people together to grow understanding, build connections, reduce isolation, and influence change.


Arts and Minds is a free, referral-only creative social prescribing programme, delivered in partnership by Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind and ARC, and funded by Comic Relief.

Arts and Minds is a friendly social group where participants can try a range of new creative skills in a relaxed space, and connect with new people whilst boosting their mood and confidence. Participants are able to take part in free weekly workshops, at either Middlesbrough Town Hall (Tuesday evenings) or ARC (Thursday mornings).

Sessions are led by a host of professional artists and focus on working with different materials and techniques; such as bullet journaling, drawing, jewellery design, mosaic work, textiles, collaging, painting, 3D design, calligraphy, and general upcycling.

Arts and Minds also emphasises environmental sustainability through using recycled materials or reused objects. There are opportunities for everyone to display artwork through our exhibitions (like this one) too.

Referrals are open to anyone aged 18+ from the Middlesbrough and Stockton area, who is finding life a little hard right now or would like to boost their mood whilst trying something new.

To find out more, please contact Georgie at [email protected]


Staying Out is ARC’s weekly creative social prescribing programme for people aged 65+ who live in Stockton on Tees. It aims to help older people stay active, remain independent, improve wellbeing, and lead fulfilling lives. Members might identify as socially isolated, have poor health, experience dementia, or have recently been discharged from hospital.

Staying Out sessions provide opportunities to meet new people and try a range of creative activities in a friendly and welcoming space; from arts and crafts to events planning and influencing professional performances.

Each member can access six free sessions, and all materials plus refreshments are included.

Participants can be referred to take part by GP’s, healthcare professionals, social workers, carers, and community organisations – or can self-refer in some instances.

To find out more about Staying Out, or to be referred to join us, please contact Sonya Curle on 01642 434174 or [email protected]