Arts fund opens to Scottish artists interested in tackling mental health stigma

Posted by See Me, 8 December 2023

Community groups and organisations across Scotland are being encouraged to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination through the arts.

Our Anti-Stigma Arts Fund is now open for the third year, accepting applications from constituted groups or organisations.

Research has shown that the arts can offer a powerful platform to share experiences, and show what the reality is for people living with mental health problems.

Launched in 2021, the first Anti-Stigma Arts Fund received applications from a range of organisations and individuals across Scotland. On the back of that success, See Me was able to fund another round in 2022.

Previous projects included a comic book created with trans and non-binary participants, a film about men’s mental health and suicide, a public information comic created with young women who have experienced abuse and homelessness, animations made by people with experience of severe and enduring mental health problems, and many others.

This year, for the 2023 fund, proposals are encouraged from groups or organisations working in Scotland with an arts project in any medium that aims to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination. Grants of between £500 to £5,000 will be awarded up to three to four projects.

Maeve Grindall, project officer for communities and priority groups at See Me, said: “Our Anti-Stigma Arts Fund is a wonderful example of how creative approaches can help tackle mental health stigma and explore the barriers we need to dismantle in order to create a stigma-free society.

“The fund has led to such a range of innovative and inspiring projects and we can’t wait to see how this year’s projects will improve our understanding of specific experiences of stigma, and give us new ways to challenge it."

The deadline to apply is midnight on Sunday 21 January.

We are interested in funding projects that are led by or collaborate with people from traditionally marginalised communities which include those with protected characteristics, or those who have experienced social inequities like poverty.

Partnership working between organisations and creative practitioners is encouraged for these projects and you must be able to demonstrate in your application that you possess or can access the necessary skills to take the project forward.

Projects must meaningfully involve people with lived experience of mental health problems and must be led by and/or engage with marginalised groups.

More information on the application process and the previous projects can be found here.