Wednesday, May 25, 2011


By Elman Nsinda
WRA Uganda

The prayers of the people who fear drugs and tablets have been answered   as scientists unveil Art-another cheap side effect free method of healing.
While deliberating on the role of Arts in Health Care during a Forum organized by Center for Arts in Health Care and School of Fine Art-university of Florida, Experts from the University of Florida said that Art and design play a very significant role in the prevention and healing of various diseases if it’s embraced by the people.

In the forum that started on 13th to 14th May this year in Kigali Rwanda, people from different countries of the region presented their experiences and art pieces and how they have been relevant in health care.
I was very moved by the demonstrations done by Capacita Rwanda. They told us to massage each other. After, I felt change in my body! To me this served as proof that Art heals.

Executive Director –Center for Arts in health care Anita Jones says that “The arts benefit patients by aiding in physical, mental and emotional recovery, including by relieving anxiety and decreasing their perception of pain. In an atmosphere where the patient often feels out of control, the arts can serve as therapeutic and healing tool, reducing stress and loneliness and providing opportunities for self expression”.

People are advised to have architectural designs on the walls of their buildings. “From architectural design to art on the walls, from access to natural lighting to inclusion of nature through land scaping and healing gardens, the physical environment has a significant impact on relieving patient and caregiver stress, improving health outcomes enhancing patient safety and overall quality of care and reducing costs”. A doctor was quoted as saying. He added that “The physical environment also plays an important role in improving health and safety of staff, reducing errors in providing care while increasing effectiveness and job satisfaction.

People from different walks of life; health workers among others are advised to embrace art as they are likely to achieving in short time and minimize costs.
The people most especially those who fear drugs and tablets can take this option mostly for prevention.
The forum gave a platform for the participants to exchange ideas and chat a way forward.
There were lots of fun, performances, music, dance and drama which kept people going and interested.

WRA’s own David Ssebuggwawo and Katy Woods also presented and talked on how WRA has been using Arts in creating awareness about maternal health. Woods showed pictures and cartoons that appealed to people. Even if it’s you, you can rush to help a pregnant neighbor. David showed the role of Arts in safe motherhood and according to his presentation, it was evident enough that art plays a key role in fostering safe motherhood. He highlighted Music, drama and talk shows and said that they have been effective in arousing responses and creating awareness.

The forum was organized by school of Fine Art+- University of Florida in conjunction with Center for Arts in health care. Participants came all the way from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, DR Congo and Rwanda the host.

Having been hooked, the participants from Uganda discussed on how to keep the fire burning.
They came up with a committee which will coordinate members and come up with activities in the country. David ssebuggwawo was selected Chairperson

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