Fourth newsletter issue


In this issue:

A preview on pilot actions

Field visit in Cluj-Napoca (Romania)

Interviews from Cluj

Last field visit in Budapest (Hungary)

A new Culture&Health project in the Marche region: ImproLANDS


READ HERE the fourth PerFare's newsletter issue

A new phase has started: the first two pilot actions promoting welfare and social inclusion through the arts

Flourishing from the capacity building programme, 8 are the artistic interventions that will take place in health and care venues in Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Sweden.

From May 2024 to May 2025, artists that have won the call to action will be working together with patients and healthcare professionals.


The first two to open the pilot action phase have been "Aqui Contigo - Sound as Last Lap" in Pombal (Portugal) and "Critical thinking & citizen's education for children and teenagers" in Cluj-Napoca (Romania).

Let's see them up close:

Aqui Contigo - Sound as Last Lap

Aqui Contigo is a project created by SAMP - Sociedade Artística Musical dos Pousos, a Public Utility Institution founded in 1873 which played an important role at regional, national and international level, whether due to the significant number of professional artists that have emerged from it or due to the innovation and quality of some of its programs and projects. Among all SAMP activity, its Artistic Education project dedicated to early childhood stands out, especially the strong social intervention of its programs developing within the scope of the therapeutic effects of the Arts.

In this sense, the project Aqui Contigo was born in 2015, being a program dedicated to people at the end of their lives and their families and caregivers. In a society that often abandons and forgets those who are dying, it is necessary to create contexts that enrich this precious and unique experience for the person and their closest circle of relationships. The Arts, as observed throughout human history, can play a vital role here, as the short history of this SAMP project demonstrates.

After years of experience, SAMP decided to present this type of project for the Municipality of Pombal, welfare partner of the PerFare partner Artemrede.


Intervention model

The Music Therapist intends, with family members and caregivers, to facilitate family support in the painful process and help in the grieving process.

During the last moments of life, in their homes or in institutions (hospitals, nursing homes or palliative care units), two music professionals work together with families to tell the sound story of each person in their terminal phase. This is done through the creation of a personal work that transfors an intimate and lonely moment into a moment of unity and communion, alleviating suffering in the final moments of their life and helping the person to free themselves spiritually.


Critical thinking & citizen's education for children and teenagers

From the success of Social Fiber Association's program "Critical thinking & citizen's education for teenagers" living in Pata Rât, the association has come to the conclusion that younger children would also have a desire to participate in such activities.
Thus, after they started the weekly activities last year in September, they soon realised that a new programme for a younger audience was needed. This led to the new initiative designed for children, aged between 3-11, with weekly workshops in animation, music and philosophy.
Within Social Fibers, there are volunteers and social professionals that constantly work together to promote long-term activities for children coming from vulnerable groups.
Keep following us to discover the upcoming actions!

Study visit in Budapest (HU): the last chapter of Perfare's capacity building programme

On 27th and 28th May 2024, the last PerFare's study visit took place in the city of Budapest, hosted by the partner Pro Progressione.

The programme was filled with candid moments of artists and socially-engaged professionals that shared their passionate work towards an inclusive and participative way to implement and promote culture and arts.

Three were the most relevant visits that the partners paid to:

  • The project ArtRAVALÓ (“ART FOR TAKEAWAY”), a socio-art project of Subjective Values Foundation and Faktor Terminál Association that from September to May engage young adults (18-24 years) raised in state care in a complete programme aimed at fostering personal development, economic and financial skills, and all practical abilities that are needed to be break the barriers and become an active part of society. Theatre and performing arts are included in the programme as a catalist of motivation ad soft skills development: youths work on a theatre production and drama workshops together, including music and dancing.

    „We believe that self-directed creative artistic activity, literature, poetry, music, acting and community experience all help us to understand ourselves and the world around us."

  • EMMA Association, a national women’s organization which works for the fundamental rights and societal equality of women, paying special attention to gender-based oppression and violence against women during the childbearing and childrearing period. Specifically, their project MARA has a strong positive outcome: to empower Roma women and assist them through their maternity journey in hospitals, where they often end up in traumatic experiences of carelessness, verbal and physical violence, they trained members of the communities as Community DOULAs. After involving these figures, they noticed that Roma women started trusting giving birth again. Moreover, the community doulas can give support in contraception and abortion.

  • The MáSzínház community, made up of children and adults with intellectual disabilities and atypical development, volunteer helpers and theatre professionals. In their work, the educational process that precedes the performance is as important as the performance itself.


During the Networking Café, the partnership also got the chance to meet associations like:


With this last study visit, Perfare's capacity building programme officially ends. Partners have treasured the programme from the very beginning and they are now working towards the implementation of the pilot actions.


More infos on the pilot actions are coming soon!

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A visit to Romania's social engagement: how arts are employed for the welfare of marginalized groups

On 25th and 26th January 2024, the PerFare partnership participated in the fourth project field visit, hosted by AltArt Foundation in the beautiful city of Cluj-Napoca, unofficial capital of the Transylvania Region in Romania.

Behind the lively university life and rich history, persistently felt all around the city, lies a capillary cultural scene that is strongly focused on the social benefit of each and every people.


Roma people: a long forgotten community

In particular, rights for Roma people are often addressed. Associations like Social Fiber, Shoshin Theatre and AltArt itself have implemented or currently have ongoing projects aimed at the improvement of the severe discriminating conditions that Roma people face on a daily basis.

The CMA - Cluj Metropolitan Area, which comprises Cluj-Napoca and 19 nearby communes: Aiton, Apahida, Baciu, Bonţida, Borșa, Căianu, Chinteni, Ciurila, Cojocna, Feleacu, Floresti, Gilău, Gârbău, Jucu, Petresti de Jos, Săvădisla, Sânpaul, Tureni, Vultureni, has worked with the association Desegregare in the amazing Pata-Cluj project, followed by Pata 2.0, relocating Roma people from the Pata Rât area in new apartments in the city centre, with the aim to give back the right for a future back to the community.

From 2014, the Desegregare association has joined forces with other local stakeholders to fight for the rights of this millennial community, also engaging in cultural activities such as art and music for the Pata Rât children and teenagers, together with Social Fiber and AltArt Fundatia.

The theatre company REACTOR, born in 2014 and active in the social theatre field thanks to specific activities linked to issues among youngsters, also organized a theatre performance in Pata Rât, together with AltArt, in 2016.

Within all the actions activated in the area, the Khetane Festival is a worth mentioning best practice that brought - for the first time ever - around 700 people from the city into the Pata Rât community thanks to its incredible programme.


Practices for youths and elderly

The social vein of Cluj-Napoca is also visible when it comes to initiatives for youngsters and elderly people.

For instance, the FRCC - Romanian Foundation for Children, Community and Family is a day care institution located in the city centre, supported by UK funds and private funds, where teenagers in poverty and/or with psychological disorders can meet after school to be followed by a team of psychologists, educators, teachers and social animators. During their stay, which is determined according to one or more "interventions" lasting 6 months, guests are supported with school activities and engage in extracurricular activities, where arts such as painting, handwriting and music are explored (also in view of discovering each kid's vocation).

As for the elderly, DASM collaborates with the City Municipality and other associations to provide consistent care for elderly. It consists of 2 day care centers where they use art as a tool to improve aging conditions. Their guests paint, make music, sing, dance, organise shows and even participated in an Erasmus+ project where a group of 15 people travelled in Europe attending museums, in order to improve their skills in digitalisation.
DASM is also involved in a plan for building a cultural centre in Pata Rât that will provide sport and cultural activities, along with services like washing machines and psychological and social assistance.

The good practices existing in Cluj-Napoca are definitely too many to list in one go.
Explore the links to know more about each reality introduced.

And now, just enjoy some pictures from the study visit:


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Connecting locally: all the Culture and Health collaborations established thanks to PERFARE

During the first project period, the PERFARE partnership has connected with the local welfare stakeholders to find their "perfect match" to collaborate with in the creation of the local synergies that will generate the PERFARE pilot actions.

From 1 to up to 4 local connections, each partner has successfully found a welfare organization willing to experiment with artistic interventions in their daily work and to investigate the beneficial "contamination" of Culture&Health practices.

Every connection will result into one artistic intervention, which will be selected among the proposals received via the CALL FOR ACTION launched on 14th September and closing on 17th November 2023.



Consorzio Marche Spettacolo is collaborating with Associazione Piombini Sensini (located in Macerata) and with Associazione Un Battito di Ali (located in Jesi and operating in the Ancona Torrette Hospital).

Associazione Piombini Sensini's services are aimed at minors and adults who experience situations of personal or family difficulty, social marginalization and psychophysical suffering. The Association's activities are aimed at improving the quality of life and developing the autonomy of the weakest and most disadvantaged people; the provision of various services is a response to the personal and relational needs of daily life, allowing the valorization of rights and resources of each individual.

Associazione Un Battito di Ali is a secular and independent association with the aim of promoting and supporting projects and initiatives of the SOD Cardiac Surgery and Pediatric and Congenital Cardiology c/o Ospedali Riuniti of Ancona.

Thus, for Italy, 2 local artistic interventions will be developed.



As a network of municipalities, Artemrede has connected the Municipality of Pombal and the Municipality of Lisbon with 4 realities operating in the welfare system.

The Municipality of Pombal will be supporting one artistic intervention together with Leiria Hospital Center - District Hospital of Pombal.

The Municipality of Lisbon will be collaborating with Alzheimer Portugal (Private Social Solidarity Institution and Patients’ Association), Boa Vizinhança Santo António (Cultural Solidarity Network between Neighbors) and Centro Social Paroquial de São Jorge de Arroios (Non-profit Private Institution of Social Solidarity), bringing 3 artistic interventions to life in Lisbon and its surroundings.



The AltArt Foundation will be supporting the creation of one artistic intervention together with Fundația Română pentru Copii - Comunitate și Familie, one of the most important non-governmental organizations focused on child protection in Romania, helping children that are living in poverty and providing support to their families and communities.



ProProgressione chose to collaborate with EMMA Közhasznú Egyesület and Vázsonyi Vilmos Idősek Otthona to develop 2 artistic interventions in Hungary.

The EMMA Association is a national women’s organization, which works for the fundamental rights and societal equality of women, paying special attention to gender-based oppression and violence against women during the childbearing and childrearing period.

Vázsonyi Vilmos Idősek Otthona is an elderly home whose main goal is to provide safe, balanced, peaceful living conditions, personalized care and care for all their residents by providing the necessary services.



Finally, Malmö City Archives have partnered up with the Health, Care and Welfare Department of Malmö to bring the artistic intervention in one or two of the total 38 elderly homes located in the city of Malmö, with a focus on participation, creation and social inclusion.


What will be the selected artistic interventions?

The rounds of selections will end by April 2024. Bear with us to get to know the winners!


Keep following us to get to know the new project coming.

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the December issue with all updates on PERFARE and its journey.

The calls to action are out!

Are you an artist or cultural operator working in Italy, Hungary, Portugal, Romania or Sweden?

Are you interested in adding a Culture&Care artistic experience into your daily work?


Send us your application!







Select your country and apply.

Check your country-specific eligibility criteria before applying.


This 5 calls for action, one for each country involved, are launched to fund artistic interventions that involve audience groups composed of the local populations targeted by the project PERFARE.

PERFARE (2022-2025) is a project co-funded by the Creative Europe Culture Programme, which intends to enhance the cooperation between the cultural and the welfare sector, by creating innovative models for artistic interventions supporting people with physical or mental health issues.
The main aims of PERFARE are to facilitate the access to performing art experiences for audience groups with health and social related issues and to innovate the partner organisations' creative models in order to make health&wellbeing services an integral part of their artistic work.
To this end, PERFARE partners Consorzio Marche Spettacolo (IT), Pro Progressione (HU), Artemrede (PT), Foundation AltArt (RO) and City of Malmö - City Archives (SE) set up cooperation agreement with local welfare stakeholders to fund one or more pilot artistic interventions that will test how perfoming arts can support people with physical and/or mental health conditions.
  1. This application will remain open until 17th November 2023.
  2. The selection of the winning proposal will happen between DECEMBER 2023 and APRIL 2024.
  3. The winning proposal will be implemented between MAY 2024 and MAY 2025.
The winning proposal will be communicated directly to the selected applicant not later than 2 months prior the suggested date of implementation, and anyway not later than APRIL 2024.
You should be an artist or cultural operator operating in the countries covered by the project (Italy, Hungary, Portugal, Romania, Sweden). Please send your application to your specific country of reference.
Please check each different call-to-action for country-specific eligibility criteria.
Please refer to the AWARD CRITERIA table to consult the criteria that will be followed to select the winning proposals.
Thank you in advance for your proposals!

Arts on Prescription: a growing, Europe-wide practice for people's wellbeing

PERFARE's study visits have been incredibly enlightening when it comes to Culture&Care practices.
The partners had the chance to meet many projects up close, which engage performing arts practices to prevent and alleviate social, mental and physical conditions.

One of the most interesting concepts is that of Arts on Prescription. This practice isn't exactly new on the market, being around since 1994, but it now drawing more and more attention all over Europe.


What is Arts on Prescription?

Arts on Prescription (AOP) is a program where healthcare professionals refer individuals to art workshops to improve psychosocial health. It is part of social prescribing and benefits those with mild to moderate mental health issues.

AOP is a non-medical approach that aids psychophysical recovery and considers social, economic, and environmental factors. It promotes holistic well-being and recognizes the impact of non-biophysical factors on health.



The United Kingdom was the pioneer in offering the integration of social and cultural activities alongside therapeutic prescriptions.

Starting in the mid-1990s, general practitioners began incorporating social and cultural elements into their treatment plans.

The first example was the AoP Stockport, launched in 1994, which provided individuals with mild to moderate anxiety or depression the opportunity to engage in various creative activities aimed at improving their mental well-being. 


A few European examples

While in the UK most AoP programs are driven by artists, in the Scandinavian model they rely more often on museum and cultural organizations and institutions.

The project promoted by the municipality of Malmö, with the support of the Skåne region, goes in this direction. A typical program is structured over approximately 10 days and offers participants with mental health issues a series of artistic and cultural activities. Groups consist of about 8-12 people and the activities vary from program to program and may include theatre, museum and gallery visits, music and singing, visual arts.

Read more:ö


In Italy, the practice of directing artistic and cultural programs towards health promotion, disease prevention, and the management of pathological conditions, including degenerative diseases, is gradually gaining ground.

An example is the AOP project located in Emilia-Romagna, where the regional authority, in collaboration with the ATER Foundation, launched Sciroppo di Teatro. This project brings together 153 general practitioners, 236 pharmacies, and a network of 36 theaters and companies specializing in theater for children and young people. The project aims to contribute to the development of cultural welfare policies, particularly focusing on theater for children and families.

Read more:


Another example of a recently launched AoP project is the one funded and promoted by the Interreg Baltic Sea region: Arts on Prescription in the Baltic Sea Region.

Local and regional public authorities, in collaboration with cultural institutions, are piloting the program, evaluating its health effects, organizational setup, and economic benefits. The arts on prescription model is then transferred to other cities and regions, supported by an online practitioner's guide and a rent-an-expert program.

Furthermore, the project aims to initiate dialogue with national authorities and health insurance funds to enhance structural support and financing options for arts on prescription. 

Read more:


Like them, Greece is also launching a national AoP programme, which provides for a structure similar to that already developed in the UK and in the Scandinavian region.

Read more:



These are just a few examples of AOP Programs existing Europe-wide. Many more are growing every other day, signaling a message well-received when it comes to WHO studies on the benefit of cultural activities on mental and physical health.

These studies comparing the overall life satisfaction levels of individuals with a vibrant cultural life to those experiencing cultural exclusion reveal a difference of more than ten percentage points in favor of the former. In addition to enhancing mood and life satisfaction, the use of art as a prescribed intervention can breathe life into the cultural sector and, particularly, the performing arts industry.



Article by
Ilaria Ciaroni
Andrea Belegni

Portugal: a hotbed for Culture&Health practices - third study visit

A new occasion for the PERFARE partners to meet up: on July 4th and 5th the third study visit will take place in Montemor-o-novo, in Portugal, and aims to explore the good practices in the field of cultural welfare that currently exist in the Portuguese territory.

This time it's Artemrede's turn to welcome the partnership and the programme they put together promises valuable inputs. Indeed, it will include moments of discussion with cultural and health&care operators, in order to stimulate the connection between the two sectors, as well as presentations and visits to spaces dedicated to experimenting with Culture&Health practices, including:


CIMAC and Pó de Vir a Ser
Program for an Inclusive Culture in Central Alentejo

"Transforma - Program for an Inclusive Culture of Central Alentejo", coordinated by CIMAC and co-financed by the European Social Fund under Alentejo 2020, aims to promote social inclusion among excluded or isolated populations, through an integrated approach between culture and social inclusion in a predominantly rural and low-density context. Transforma intends to establish a differentiating approach in the way in which culture can generate social cohesion and inclusion, economic growth, sustainable environmental practices, in a logic of participatory citizenship and territorial proximity.


Training, Music Therapy and Expressive Therapies

The Artistic Musical Society of Pousos – SAMP – is a Public Utility Entity founded in 1873.
Among the various activities of SAMP, the art education project dedicated to early childhood stands out, of which it was a pioneer at a national level and which constitutes a reference with some of its programs, as well as the strong social intervention that its programs include in the ambit of therapeutic effects of the arts.


Art creation space for artists with mental illness

Manicómio is the first outsider art studio in Portugal. Located in Lisbon in a creative cowork space, it brings together artists who have or have had mental health issues, professionals from the creative sector and companies. Manicómio is also a design studio (the Agencia Manicómio) for all creatives who have suffered and suffer from mental illness. Manicómio is a 20-year struggle for honesty, dignity and recognition of artists who are excluded from the art world due to the stigma resulting from their history of mental health. In addition to artwork and exhibitions, Manicómio guides its artists in other creative and commercial ventures, such as advertising, illustration, jewelry and media. It is a space of human, social, financial and aesthetic dignity.


Read the complete programme HERE



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Second newsletter issue

We're back from the second field visit... and ready for the third!

On 27th and 28th April,
Malmö City Archives hosted us for an amazing programme
filled with inspiring practices.
And on 4th and 5th July,
the partnership will meet up in Montemor-o-Novo
to discover the Portuguese best practices on cultural welfare.


Read here the second newsletter issue

Cultural welfare in Malmö - Study visit in Sweden

6 months after our first study visit, the partners are now ready for the second one, now hosted by The City of Malmö - City Archives in Malmö, Sweden.

On 27th and 28th April, project partners and welfare stakeholders are invited to discover the local best practices sperimenting the beneficial collaboration between Culture&Arts and the Health&Wellbeing sector.

For the occasion, the hosting partner has invited guests with relevant experience on the cultural welfare field, who will further inspire the partners in relation to the upcoming project activities.

Malmö Museums
Birgitta Kelly, Museum Pedagogue

The Museums in Malmö do not only display art and culture, but often involve educational activities including seniors and people with special needs, as well as being part of the initiative Arts On Prescription.

Birgitta Kelly works in the Museum Department of The City of Malmö as a Museum Pedagogue.

Arts On Prescription
Anita Jensen, Culture & Health Strategist in primary healthcare

Arts on Prescription (AoP) is a complementary intervention used to support people who are on sick leave due to stress, anxiety and depression and/or musculoskeletal pain, defined as participating in arts activities in closed groups, for 2.5 hours twice a week for ten weeks including i.e. song, crafts, drama and concert.
Patients are identified and referred to AoP by professionals in primary health care and outpatient psychiatric care.

Anita Jensen writes academic articles on Arts on Prescriptions in Sweden, but also in the other Northern Countries, being Norway, Denmark and the UK.


Dance for Parkinsons
Marie Norrthon, Project Manager Skånes Dance Theatre

A dance workshop for persons with Parkinson's Disease: Dance for Parkinsons consists of classes where participants are empowered to explore movement and music.

Marie Norrthon is a creative producer with many years of experience in making culture available, creating meetings and enabling joint experiences. Her areas of interest are performing arts, art and culture in all forms, public service and accessibility issues, urban development, cultural planning, cultural planning and cultural policy.


Ed Damron
, artistic director, and Kajsa Littgren, producer, at Expressteatern

Expressteatern was formed in 1986 after studies at Écoles Jacques Lecoq "Mime, mouvement et théatre" in Paris. It created more than 40 performances, mostly for young audiences. They play both on their stage in Malmö and on tour, with the support of Malmö City, Region Skåne, and the Norwegian Culture Council. Expressteatern wants to create a theater that is simple and direct, that makes people's dreams and feelings visible, using the physical theater traditions: mime, masquerade, clowning and commedia dell'arte.


The programme also includes visits of the Malmö City Archives, The Malmö Art Gallery and the Tuppen (The Rooster) - a meeting place for the elderly, run by the Health, Care and Welfare Department.

The City of Malmö

Malmö is one of Sweden's largest and most densely populated cities. Malmö is also an interesting cultural centre, right on the border with Denmark, founded in the 10th century to monitor European sea transits.

In this context, The City of Malmö - City Archives stores the whole Malmö's memory with archives from the city's administration and authorities, as well as large collections of, among other things, family and association archives.

With its concept “Culture for the elderly”, the Archives develop collaborative work between welfare and culture administrations, with the mission to coordinate and make available a wide, qualitative, cultural offering for the elderly population in the city of Malmö. “Culture for the elderly” offers activities where the elderly both consume and co-create. To make this possible, collaborations with cultural institutions are developed and continuously developing, such as with Malmö’s museums, cultural schools, opera venues and other cultural institutions around the city.


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