Need and Impact

Some people experience more
than their fair share
of difficulties in life.

Arty-Folks reaches out to adults of working age 18+ in Coventry and Warwickshire who find themselves at a low point in life and are struggling with a wide range of conditions including

diagnosed or self-diagnosed mental ill health and conditions such as depression, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD

46% attend Arty-Folks to de-stress.

“My mind is going in circles like a washing machine, constantly thinking and worrying, and I just can’t find a way to stop it.”

long-term and complex mental health conditions such as psychosis, PTSD, schizophrenia, eating and other personality disturbances

77% are supported by NHS mental health services.

“I do understand that the medication is keeping me alive but I have been on it for so long, surely that’s not right?  I am alive but I feel so dulled down and I don’t feel that I am living.”

employees on sick leave and at risk of escalating mental stress into more complex and enduring conditions

11% are on sick leave

“I have talked to my employers but I got the impression they just want to know when I will be back.  I have no clue what is going on in my head right now but I know I just can’t face it, something needs to change but I don’t know what.”

no contact with mental health services fearing prejudice and the stigma that comes with a diagnosis

14% do not claim any benefits

“I have to rely on my parents.  We don’t want anybody to know that I am not able to work.  I have completely isolated myself from friends and family because I hate it when they ask me: So what are you doing now after Uni?”

assessed as below the threshold for interventions by statutory services but who are unable to function without support

43% are prescribed medication by their GP but are not able to receive treatments or therapy for their conditions

“I feel so stuck in limbo.  Some services have diagnosed me as below their threshold while others said that my needs are too substantial.  It feels like doors keep shutting in my face and I don’t know where to turn to.”

discharged from mental health hospitals and are looking to rebuild their lives

32% were just discharged from a mental health hospital

“My care co-ordinator told me to try Arty-Folks while waiting for other services.  I asked her when I would be allocated a psychiatric nurse and see a psychiatrist and she couldn’t tell me.”

Without the right support at the right time a mental health breakdown with far reaching consequences is inevitable.

The strain on people’s mental health and wellbeing is continuing to rise and it is estimated that 1 in 6 people struggle with mental ill health. In Coventry alone around 67,000 people between 16-74 years old have a diagnosed common mental health disorder and most are assessed as
below the threshold to receive specialist mental health support.

A medical diagnosis can offer relief at start by naming the problem but on the other hand can also disempower by putting the spotlight on a person’s deficits and disorders no medication can cure.

How much the burden of mental illness weighs on the NHS and the economy is frequently pointed out. But what concerns us most at Arty-Folks is the human costs to the individual, their family and friends, and our wider community.

Mental ill health is very isolating and continues to be stigmatised despite great efforts by national campaigns.  The people we support feel stuck with poor mental health and are some of our city’s most marginalised and socially isolated.

From them we learn how social and economic inactivity impacts on their self-esteem, their physical health and mental well-being, as well as their hope for recovery and a better future.

At Arty-Folks we know that underneath and despite all the trauma and hurts, there is an unbroken spirit still seeking to grow.

Art is a powerful tool that is able to spark that human
drive to explore, to learn, and
against all odds to succeed.

Our commitment to helping our service users transform their lives is backed by robust impact measurement.  We use  a range of quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods at quarterly intervals that shows a significant positive impact within 3 months regular attendance.

Our bespoke database logs immediate and long term needs and measures progress made against personal action plans.

To read more about our work and our impact take a look at our Annual Report.

Without support it can be difficult to find a way forward through a very lonely, frightening and confusing time.

Annual Report 2019/20

We will not let the pandemic overshadow how much we have achieved during 2019/20!