Work from Art is an Art intervention program for Workplace Mental Health. WFA was started in October 2020 as a result of the emotional devastation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic on the Indian workforce. While studies have shown that workers in India experience higher stress than many other surveyed countries, the pandemic has immeasurably worsened this situation.
Traditional boundaries between work and home have been erased due to lockdowns, and workplace mental health issues such as loneliness, anxiety and stress are at an all-time high.
Typical Workplace Wellness measures such as counselling are helpful and indeed are considered among the top factors in the choice of an employer. However, such measures are often too little, too late.
The taboo around mental health in Indian society often means that people suffering from such issues rarely speak about it. The same CignaTTK study indicates that though 89% Indians surveyed suffered from stress, 75% of them were not comfortable talking to professionals about it.
While workplace mental health issues can cause untold psychological damage among the workforce, it can also have an adverse result on the business itself. Investing in wellness programs however does demonstrate ways to mitigate such workforce burnouts. A 2018 paper by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), reveals that “on an average for every rupee being spent on Employee wellness programme, employers get Rs. 132.33 as saving on absenteeism cost and Rs.6.62 back as reduced health care costs.”
We believe that organisations need multiple means to address the problem of workplace mental health. Considering that labour costs are among the highest expenses for a business, organizations need to approach wellness solutions as a spectrum that addresses the many dimensions of workplace mental health.
Art as a means to improve mental health
Our experience in both business processes, as well as Visual-Art applications, led us to develop a program specifically designed to improve mental health in organisations. The program uses principles from Art and Design to address a range of issues such as Stress, Anxiety, Workplace Loneliness, Social Isolation and Reduction in Critical and Creative thinking abilities.
The project is currently in its early stages and is undergoing pilot testing.
Browse other projects from the Sandbox
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- PencilplayPencilplay explores how childrens drawings may be used as a diagnostic tool in early childhood development
- PlayjamIs there a need for a learning bridge between home and preschool? Playjam imagines a rolling-school, that is built around play and parental-bonding.
- TrellisTrellis is an Entrepreneur Support Network designed to promote entrepreneurial education through a community of practice
- KBWTFNA Conversation-show on Discord which explores topics at the intersections of Culture-Sustainability-Technology-Commerce
- Work from ArtWork from Art combats workplace mental health issues using principles from Art & Design