SPRONG fund for Creating Cultures of Care

  • 22 december 2022
Creating Cultures of Care will receive a so-called SPRONG fund of € 1 million per 4 years from the research-coordinating body SIA for the next 8 years. This grant will help educational institutes to cooperate and enhance the quality and design of their research.
SPRONG fund for Creating Cultures of Care

In the partnership Creating Cultures of Care, nine HKU’s professorships, Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Fontys Academies and HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht join their efforts with the University of Humanistic Studies and UMC Utrecht in the fields of healthcare and society.

The Corona crisis, increasing health inequality and unequal opportunities are all signs that proper healthcare is not evident, and that taking care of each other is increasingly important. Approaching this social challenge from an arts perspective, and using the power of design, can lead to new insights, and eventually to concrete improvements. Heleen Jumelet, chair of HKU’s Executive Board: ‘The Art of Healthcare and Wellbeing is the name of our guiding light by which we focus on the unique contribution that art education and research can add. That’s why we decided that HKU should request this support from SPRONG. Art enhances the wellbeing of individuals and overall society. And the power of designers is that they can sympathise and express personal experiences that are relevant for change.’

Not for others, but with each other

At Creating Cultures of Care, artists, professionals in healthcare and wellbeing, policy makers, patients, residents and students work together in Care Labs, amidst the daily practice of the hospital or residential areas. Here they explore new concepts and practices of healthcare and caretaking, contributing to (radical) transformation in both healthcare & wellbeing and in the arts. Academies are already working on concrete projects, such as applying arts to promotive positive health in neighbourhoods, writing interactive dialogues for social robots deployed in care for people with Alzheimer’s, promoting the image of homeless youths, designing interactions within the geriatric care through imagination, musical interventions at the hospital, and cocreation between terminal patients and artist to express the patient’s life story.

Open knowledge network

This new fund enables room to further develop and interconnect these projects; to stimulate this movement towards a more caring society; and to share knowledge between the separate professional fields across a single open knowledge network. HKU’s intendant for The Art of Healthcare and Wellbeing, Gjilke Keuning: ‘Designers and artists are increasingly becoming the catalysts for healthcare challenges, by having an open mind and looking at healthcare practices from a different angle. Vice versa, healthcare can inspire to new perspectives in the arts practices. Together we can create room to contemplate and explore, which is necessary to bring about change.’

Innovative education

Educational organisations are important stakeholders in this network. It allows them to train a new kind of (future) professional, both in regular education and in specific training for professionals. Creating Cultures of Care stimulates and facilitates more cooperation between the arts education and the training of healthcare professionals, and will also lead to trans-disciplinary (creative) education.