Arts in Eldercare Seminar 2018 Offers Innovative Digital Approaches To Help Seniors Live Better


·         International and local experts share innovative, digital technology to enhance quality of life for seniors

·         New Sparks! Arts for Wellness Toolkit launched as resource for Community Care sector



SINGAPORE, 6 September 2018 – The Arts in Eldercare Seminar 2018 organised by the National Arts Council (NAC), presents innovative new ways to engage seniors through the arts. A platform for sharing best practices in bringing the arts to seniors in various social settings, this year’s seminar highlights include digital approaches and ideas to integrate the arts in residential and community care settings.


2          Officiated by guest-of-honour Mr Baey Yam Keng, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth & Transport, the seminar was attended by more than 300 social and healthcare practitioners, artists, community leaders, policymakers and funders who learned from experts from Korea, Japan, the UK and Singapore.   


3          “Our seniors can lead more active and fulfilled lives when they participate in the arts; and we can make it more accessible to them. Through the use of technology, our artists are able to reach out to seniors in new ways. Let us work closely to develop more creative ways to engage our seniors through the arts, and help them enjoy a better quality of life.” said Mr Baey.  


4          Ms Chua Ai Liang, Senior Director, Engagement & Participation, National Arts Council said: “Last year, findings from “The Arts for Ageing Well Study[1]” funded by the Council showed that seniors who engage in the arts experience a greater sense of holistic well-being. As Singapore pushes forward in our Smart Nation goals, we are pleased to introduce new and innovative ways of incorporating technology in the arts to engage seniors. We hope these innovative arts approaches will bring about greater inclusivity and promote well-being among our seniors.”


5          The 5th edition featured notable international and local speakers, including keynote speakers Ms Claire Ford, Founder of We engAGE in the United Kingdom, Ms Jeon Hye Won, Head of Department at Korea Association of Senior Welfare Centers, and Ms Emiko Namikawa, President of the NPO Art Resources Development Association in Tokyo, Japan. See Annex for the full line-up of speakers.  


6          Among these creative new ways to engage seniors are techniques and activities in the Sparks! Arts for Wellness Toolkit. A preview of it was launched at the seminar and the full kit will be available from November 2018. A joint initiative of NAC and the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC), the toolkit is free for download from the NAC and AIC websites. The toolkit will allow social and healthcare practitioners to acquire new ideas, and implement interesting and sustainable arts programmes that can be run independently at Community Care facilities. It was developed as a result of an arts residency initiative to design and test senior-friendly programmes.


7          This latest NAC-AIC initiative is on the back of a three-year Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2016 to use the arts to improve the wellbeing and quality of life for community care clients. 10 artists worked with 100 residents from nine nursing homes from October 2017 to January 2018 in this first-ever arts residency. It took into account seniors’ preferences and provided opportunities for self-expression, discovery and social experiences. To date, close to 500 staff from over 100 facilities have been trained to carry out meaningful arts-based activities for their clients under the AIC Wellness Programme.


8          The Arts in Eldercare Seminar is part of Silver Arts 2018, an annual arts festival that celebrates seniors and creative ageing. This year’s Festival, its 7th edition, offers 37 programmes at over 24 venues island-wide from 6 to 30 September, featuring some 80 artists and arts groups. Curated to encourage inter-generational bonding, Silver Arts 2018 provides creative and engaging opportunities for the younger generation to connect with seniors through shared experiences as well as foster dialogues for a more caring community in Singapore.


For more information on AES 2018, please visit