13% (136,000) of children in Ireland now live with the challenges of a long-term health condition such as diabetes, epilepsy, juvenile arthritis, spina bifida, heart conditions, cystic fibrosis, cerebal palsy, rare and complex conditions and others. 18,000 of these children are considered as severely hampered in their everyday lives, according to the most recent Growing Up in Ireland Report. Children living with health conditions face loneliness, stress, anxiety, and feel defined by their condition. They experience: stigma associated with their condition, social isolation and loneliness and fewer quality friendships.
Helium Arts brings positivity to these children’s lives through award-winning, participatory arts programmes. Our creative projects take place in hospital, health and community settings around Ireland, transforming the healthcare experience of young people and those who care for them through art, imagination and play.
We recently carried out a Social Return on Investment Study with S3 Solutions to determine the social value of Helium’s work. The research found that for every €1 invested in Helium Arts, the organisation generated a social value of €1.98. Social Return on Investment refers to benefits that do not have a clear financial value, and is a means of quantifying the wider social, economic, and environmental impact of an organisation like Helium Arts. Read our Executive Summary below or download the full report as a PDF.
Learn about the impact of our work from some of the young people and the healthcare professionals involved!
Since Helium was established in 2010, our projects have benefited over 6,000 children and their families across 17 counties.
An independent evaluation of Helium’s work found that young people were:
– happier and less bored as a result of taking part
– more confident
– distracted from their illness
– feeling more comfortable in the hospital environment