Mentoring and peer support as facilitators of arts-based practice in care homes | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 10, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2040-2457
  • E-ISSN: 2040-2465


This article reports on the evaluation of a mentoring approach that was adopted to support the sustainable provision of activities in UK care homes across three creative art forms: poetry, dance and drama. Data are presented from multiple sources including questionnaires, focus groups, reflective diaries and interviews to explore the implementation and impact of the approach. Artists reported that the support of their mentors enabled them to develop the confidence, skills and strategies required to work effectively in care homes as a new setting. For the mentors, being involved in the project led to professional development. Diverse methods of mentor-to-artist contact were a key feature of the approach, including face-to-face meetings, telephone calls, e-mails and tele-conferencing. Peer support, although not planned, emerged as an important mechanism for sharing skills and information among artists. The impact of the mentoring approach continued beyond the life of the project, with some artists extending their practice to additional care homes and other settings including homeless adults, young children and hospitals.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): arts; care homes; dance; drama; mentoring; participatory; peer support; poetry
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