Funding granted for Mansfield Museum’s art on prescription scheme

Image: Mansfield Museum (Mansfield District Council)

The scheme, intended to help survivors of abuse to improve their mental health, will use the museum’s natural history collection

A new arts on prescription scheme at Mansfield Museum- designed to help survivors of trauma, domestic and sexual abuse – has received funding.

A ​​£99k grant from the Esmee Fairbairn Collection Fund will support the project which is hoped to improve survivors’ mental health through the ‘Nature Power’ scheme.

It will use the museum’s natural history collection in “ways that help improve the health and wellbeing of highly vulnerable and often isolated adults.”

Its 1,500 item collection includes about 800 taxidermy birds, of which over 40 have been identified as rare and significant specimens including a large diorama featuring two secretary birds with a snake.

The scheme is set to include work with social prescribers and voluntary organisations, and will explore the role the museum and local people can play in natural history and climate action.

The collection will be used to guide art activities and environmental activities including trips to Sherwood Forest, local parks, and others to museums and galleries.

There are also plans for annual exhibitions to showcase how the power of nature and creativity have been harnessed for therapeutic purposes, and the creation a new permanent bird gallery called World of Birds.

Cllr Stuart Richardson, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Growth, said the grant will “facilitate progress on this project at a time when the council budget for the museum is having to contract.”