There is a strong connection between being creative and improved mental wellbeing.
Now that more of our time will be spent at home, it is a great opportunity to pick up an old hobby or start a new one. Doing something creative can not only help you to develop new skills but can also improve your self-esteem and social connections.
Creative Ireland is working with Local Authorities to offer localised creative initiatives in their areas. These initiatives may include:
- engaging with historical laces and sites in their locality
- live, mobile, and pop up entertainment in various settings
- creative photography
- utilisation of spaces and places for Arts
Contact your Local Authority for more information on what will be happening in your area.
The Design and Crafts Council Ireland YouTube channel has many step-by-step interactive workshops and short video tutorials in their Get Ireland Making Programme.
On this channel you can:
- draw or paint
- learn a new song
- do an online dance class
- try knitting and sewing
- cook or bake
Reading and writing stories
Reading and writing stories is a great way to distract yourself from all that is going on around you. Immersing yourself in a story, or creating a story of your own can help you to relax and de-stress during these challenging times.
- read a book or listen to an eAudiobook – You can join the library online at LibrariesIreland.ie and download e-books to read on your own device
- if you’re thinking of writing some stories of your own there are many helpful tips and guides online to get you started. Libraries Ireland also have over 50 free online courses on creative writing
- Fighting Words have some great resources to support creative writing during COVID-19 for both primary and post-primary students
- the Museum of Literature Ireland offers Bright Sparks Creative Bursts, which are a series of writing games and prompts for children created by the award winning children’s writer Sarah Webb
Spend time in nature
Being outdoors can help to reduce anxiety, improve your mood and even increase your self-esteem. Spending quality time in nature is a great way to improve your mental wellbeing and help you to keep well.
- Waterways Ireland has developed lots of practical educational content for primary school children for activity at home or in nature. They share links and inspirational content for families to use over the coming weeks of social distancing. Activities planned include a Bugs and Beasties workshop for Halloween
- Incredible Edibles have a range of activities on their website, from resources to help children learn about different foods, to tips on gardening. They have also recently launched their 2021 healthy eating and growing primary school project. Register your school to receive your school grow pack. You can find more information here.
- the Heritage Council of Ireland are encouraging people to #KnowYour5K , and share their appreciation of our storied past, by posting pictures or videos of treasures within their 5K radius. Whether it’s waterways, landscapes, woodlands, bogs, wildlife, a historical building or even some old memorabilia, nothing is off limits. Check out their social media pages for more information.
- Grow It Yourself has great tips and ideas for the budding gardening enthusiast. The website includes a useful month by month calendar giving ideas for what to sow/harvest/or prepare that month. And don’t think it is too late to start gardening this year, there are some handy winter veg that can still be sown!
- Grow It Yourself are also launching their Grow it Forward programme, which is designed to help the nation eat well by inspiring and supporting people to grow, cook and eat some of their own food at home. Participants will register through their local library to grow some of their own food with a free GIY starter kit and encouraged to ‘grow it forward’ to 9 others by passing on seeds, seedlings or produce
- Bord Bia have a wonderful gardening section on their website, with useful growing tips, information on the benefits of gardening, and lots more