Healing Sounds in the Foyer nominated for 2017 Allianz Business to Arts Award

Healing Sounds in the Foyer, a programme of monthly live music performances in the foyer of University Hospital Waterford, presented by Waterford Healing Arts Trust and AIB Ardkeen, has been shortlisted for the 2017 Allianz Business to Arts awards. These awards recognise and champion the spirit of collaboration between businesses, artists and arts organisations that develop creative partnerships, bringing the arts and artists into mutually beneficial relationships across society. The awards ceremony takes place on 4 September at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin.  Further details from www.businesstoarts.ie

Alan Browne, Music Co-ordinator, WHAT; Carol Normoyle, Branch Manager, AIB Ardkeen & Claire Meaney, Acting Arts Director, WHAT
Alan Browne, Music Co-ordinator, WHAT; Carol Normoyle, Branch Manager, AIB Ardkeen & Claire Meaney, Acting Arts Director, WHAT

Healing Sounds in the Foyer promotes the positive relationship between music, health and wellbeing through live performances by professional musicians.  These aim to enhance the hospital experience by reducing anxiety and stress for patients, visitors and staff.  The programme has been nominated in the Best Creative Staff Engagement category of the awards, which recognises a business which has worked with an arts organisation in an innovative and mutually beneficial way, bringing creativity into the workplace or engaging staff in the arts or a creative process.

The relationship between AIB Ardkeen and Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT) began in 2014 when AIB Ardkeen supported the framing of tapestries at University Hospital Waterford (UHW).  The two organisations then agreed to develop the relationship further through a sponsorship partnership of Healing Sounds in the Foyer at UHW.  The partnership deepened in 2017, following the testimony of a customer of the bank who described how their family had benefited from experiencing music in the hospital setting during a difficult time.  AIB Ardkeen staff decided unanimously to increase their support of the Healing Sounds initiative and the wider arts programme at WHAT and undertook to organise a 12-hour Spinathon at the neighbouring Ardkeen Stores, raising €6000.  Such has been the success of this sponsorship that AIB Ardkeen has committed to making this an annual event.

Reacting to the news of the nomination, Claire Meaney, Acting Arts Director of Waterford Healing Arts Trust, said “We are thrilled that our Healing Sounds programme, so generously supported by AIB Ardkeen, has been shortlisted for this Allianz Business to Arts award.  AIB Ardkeen is an ideal partner for us, given their commitment to the local community and the enthusiastic, willing and hands-on support of their management and staff, and we are delighted that their efforts have been recognised at national level”.

Carol Normoyle, Branch Manager, AIB Ardkeen, added “AIB Ardkeen is pleased to support the Healing Sounds programme managed by Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT) at University Hospital Waterford.  WHAT is close to the hearts of the people of Waterford as the local community can see and feel the difference WHAT makes to the hospital experience.  The live music performances of WHAT’s Healing Sounds programme bring a positive, softer atmosphere to the clinical setting at what is often a difficult time for patients, their families, visitors and staff.  Customers of the bank have spoken vividly about the difference music in the hospital setting has made to their experience, as a result of which, AIB Ardkeen staff are unanimously supportive of the activities of WHAT”.

Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT) is Ireland’s leading arts and health programme. Established in 1993, WHAT brings arts experiences to the bedsides of patients at University Hospital Waterford and other healthcare settings.  WHAT believes that the arts contribute to the wellbeing and vitality of society and that engaging with the arts stimulates the participant’s sense of identity and creativity.  WHAT supports the development of arts and health in Ireland and manages the national website www.artsandhealth.ie
ENDS