Arts@BWC

Photograph of our Waterfall House courtyardThere is overwhelming evidence that arts and creative projects can make a positive difference and hugely improve the experience of patients, carers, visitors and staff.

An Arts Framework has been developed to support an Arts for Health Programme at Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital – Arts@BWC

Arts@BWC has been designed in partnership with patients, families, and staff across all Trust sites.

The aim of the programme is to enhance health care provision and improve the experience for the 384,000 patient visits each year, as well as the environment for our staff. To provide a co-ordinated and structured approach that is equitable, inclusive and fair across all sites of the organisation, including community hubs.

The core purpose of our Arts@BWC Programme is to:

  • Improve the patient experience through the arts, in all its forms.
  • Bring a sustainable, co-ordinated and equitable provision of arts for all.
  • Integrate art into our buildings to help to create welcoming and relaxed spaces, less clinical environments and contribute to a place of well-being where patients, families and staff feel safe and happy.
  • Develop links with local artists - established and up and coming, and organisations with whom we can work with, for the benefit of both.

Photograph of our interactive waterfall Key research has also shown that:

  • Art eases anxiety, stress and depression for both patients and care staff.
  • Art shortens patients’ length of stay in hospital.
  • Art reduces patients' need for painkilling medication.
  • Art increases care staff morale.
  • Art improves communication between patients and carers.
  • Art improves the overall experience of healthcare and social care environment.

We think everyone should have the opportunity to experience these benefits. That is why we are dedicated to bringing art to everyone through Arts@BWC, to contribute towards improvements in the following areas:

  • Patient experience and wellbeing
  • Staff experience and wellbeing
  • Health Prevention
  • Health Improvement

Support from our charities

Arts@BWC is entirely funded through charitable sources and we're extremely grateful to all of our wonderful supporters, donors, individuals and organisations for making it possible.

If you'd like to help us continue to inspire, engage and entertain our patients and their families please click on the donate button below.

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Current projects

Waterfall House Magical Journey

Lavendar House – mural design in progress by artist David Thomas Barry, in collaboration with patients and staff.

Previous projects

Damien Hirst artwork

In 2020, British artist Damien Hirst released two limited-edition rainbow prints to show support for the NHS in the Coronavirus crisis. The work is made up of bands of coloured butterfly wings, one of the artist’s best‐known motifs. A limited edition of the work was produced with all profits donated to NHS Charities Together and The Felix Project, raising a total of £1,508,172.  Damien made the decision to donate some of the prints to some UK Trusts and we are pleased to say we were one of the Trusts to be chosen.

Damien Hirst's Butterfly Rainbow

The limited-edition Butterfly Rainbows is now proudly on display in the main corridor at our Children’s Hospital opposite our very own rainbow corridor. The beautiful piece of art brightens up the corridor and we hope it will bring joy to our patients, families, and staff as they pass by.

Damien Hirst's Butterfly Rainbow

Rald Dahl stained glass windows

Roald Dahl is one of the world’s best-loved authors. In 2019 we were honoured to work with Mrs Felicity Dahl to bring the magic of his stories to Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Photo of Roald Dahl artworks

Our beautiful Roald Dahl stained glass windows take pride of place in the entrance to Waterfall House, our Children’s Cancer and Rare Diseases Centre.

Renowned for his much-loved illustrations, Sir Quentin generously donated his original drawings to enable us to create the windows which feature many of the most well-known characters from Roald Dahl’s children’s books, including The BFG, The Enormous Crocodile, and The Twits.

Funded entirely by charitable donations, we hope that our windows will inspire our young patients to read and enjoy literature, generate conversations, distract from difficult and upsetting situations and provide a stimulus for learning and self-expression.

We were delighted to welcome HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to our hospital in January 2020 to unveil the windows in a special ceremony with our children, families and staff.

HRH the Duchess of Cornwall unveiling our art