Participation in Cultural Heritage for Mental Health Recovery | International Conference

Op 29 en 30 november 2018 brengt de internationale conferentie Participation in cultural heritage for mental health recovery in Museum Dr. Guislain in Gent experten uit heel de wereld en uit verschillende sectoren samen rond interventies met cultureel erfgoed die gericht zijn op het verbeteren van het welzijn en de gezondheid van mensen. De focus ligt bovendien specifiek op interventies bedoeld voor mensen die herstellen van geestelijke gezondheidsproblemen of mensen in een kwetsbare mentale situatie.

Logo ConferentieThat museums, archives, heritage organisations and the like can create a social value and have a positive impact on health and wellbeing is not just a matter of belief. It’s possible, provided that they develop sustainable offerings in close co-operation with the care sector, communities and the wellbeing policies. Offerings that meet the needs of people and communities, not the heritage agenda.

On many places in the world archives, museums, heritage organisations, universities and organizations in the health care sector are working together on long-term trajectories, creative projects and out-of-the box activities. Many of these focus on deploying heritage collections to improve the wellbeing and health of people as well as measuring and evaluate the impact of those interventions. This conference wants to bring together, on 29 and 30 November 2018 in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent (Belgium), individuals from the public, academic, third sector and voluntary sectors to promote learning, discussion and debate around interventions with cultural heritage with the aim of improving the wellbeing and health of people recovering from mental health problems or people in a vulnerable situation.

Keynote speakers

Helen Chatterjee is a Professor of Biology in UCL Biosciences; her research interests include the value of cultural encounters in health and wellbeing, and the role of touch and object handling in health, wellbeing and education. Read more ...

Nick Merriman was appointed Chief Executive of the Horniman Museum on 1 May 2018. He was Director of Manchester Museum from March 2006 to April 2018. Between June 2017 and February 2018 he was acting as Interim Director of the Whitworth. Read more ...


The program offers a diverse selection of presentations that throw a light on the conference theme from different perspectives from people working on creative and innovative projects in a research or operational capacity. Speakers come from small organisations and cultural heritage institutions that are leading in the field of health and wellbeing. You can also participate at workshops or special museum tours.

Check out the program.


The conference will be held in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent. Housed in the oldest mental asylum in Belgium, which dates back to 1857, the museum aims to break down the many prejudices that still define what is ‘mentally ill’ and what is ‘normal’. During the conference you can discover the permanent collection and find out about the history of psychiatry, as well as an international collection of outsider art or art brut.

Address: Jozef Guislainstraat 43, Ghent. Google Maps. Public transport: Tram 1 direction Evergem, stop Guislainstraat. Timetable



Ticket sales are now open. Click here to register for the conference.

We are pleased to invite you to the conference dinner on Thursday evening 29 November. Join us for great food in a unique setting and an opportunity to socialise with colleagues! Places are limited, so pre-booking is essential. We will circulate the location and menu in October 2018.


  • Full ticket 100 €
  • One day 60 €
  • Speakers ticket 50 €
  • Conference dinner 30 €

We hope to see you in the Ghent, the hidden pearl of Flanders, Belgium!

Praktische info

Museum Dr. Guislain, Jozef Guislainstraat 43, 9000 Ghent
Meer info

Organised by FARO. Flemish interface centre for cultural heritage in co-operation with Museum Dr. Guislain, MIAT Museum about Industry, Labour and Textile, Iedereen Leest and University Library Ghent.

Adviseur participatie | welzijn
Sectorcoördinator archieven
02 213 10 87

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