A new podcast about art and mental health

A group of local volunteers has recently released Art Heals, a new podcast about arts and mental health, and the people who create to heal.

When the team — led by multi-instrumentalist and music producer Earle Peach — got together a year ago to start planning, they had no idea how timely a mental health podcast would be in 2020.

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“I think Art Heals is most relevant during the pandemic because people are more isolated than ever before,” says podcast host Elaine Joe, who’s also a musician, composer, and mental health consumer. “The problem with isolation is it creates loneliness, and loneliness creates depression. That can lead people to not reach out, and hurt themselves, or wait too long to reach out, and hurt others.”

The podcast highlights artists and creative initiatives where arts and mental health meet. The aim is to inspire, raise awareness, reduce stigmas, and explore diverse stories of healing.

The first episode features Sarah Jickling, a Vancouver-based musician and mental health advocate who isn’t afraid to sing about her bipolar recovery or experiences with intergenerational trauma. She talks about her newest record, The Family Curse, released almost exactly a year ago, which was instrumental to her healing. In the second episode, you’ll meet Alaric Posey, a local composer and music teacher. He’s also the assistant conductor and manager of the Highs & Lows — a low-barrier choir that promotes wellness for people with mental health challenges.

Art Heals provides inspirational stories from people who society sometimes categorizes as not being able to contribute much,” Joe says. “The first two episodes demonstrate just how much people with diverse life experiences have to offer. This podcast also helps caregivers understand mental health challenges better. So it’s a very supportive and accessible way to learn about mental health through the creative arts.”

Listen to Art Heals on your favourite podcast streaming platform, or on the Art Heals Podbean page: https://arthealspodcast.podbean.com/

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