Developing guidelines for involving people experiencing mental ill-health in archaeological projects

    Project Details

    Academic description

    Heritage interventions to support mental health and wellbeing have become a focus of research and policy
    In 2018, Historic England produced a framework of how heritage impacts wellbeing, including heritage as mechanism and healing and there has been a move towards social prescription of these types of intervention
    Archaeology is a well-established heritage intervention, being used to support veteran wellbeing and other at-need groups
    It is becoming a ‘go to’ intervention for improving wellbeing.
    While there are benefits to taking part, the applicants’ current research suggests that there are potential risks to those who receive support and to the archaeological remains
    This may be because wellbeing and mental health, and mental ill-health are separate phenomena. Wellbeing and mental health are commonly conceptualised as feelings of e.g. happiness, satisfaction, and meaning in life. While mental ill-health includes the presence of diagnoses e.g. anxiety, depression, and trauma
    Addressing mental ill-health requires different skills and knowledge to wellbeing initiatives.

    Our MARCH Sandpit (February 2020) brought together experts by experience, research, service provision, and policy, to discuss the future of archaeological projects as interventions. Consensus fell on the development of a set of guidelines to support organisations in the planning and delivery of archaeological projects. The proposed research will bring together experts through an online Delphi consultation process to develop guidelines to support services in establishing suitable and effective programmes for people with mental ill-health participating in archaeological projects. The guidelines will also support social prescribing in identifying effective and safe programmes.
    StatusFinished
    Effective start/end date1/09/2013/08/21

    Funding

    • UK Research and Innovation

    UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

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