Evidenced-based evaluation of Teapot Trust’s art therapy work with children and young people is key to understanding its impact, extending its reach, ensuring fair access, and leveraging public funding. Below are details of our collaborative research projects.

University of Manchester (current)                                                                                                                                                 

Led by Dr Daniela Ghio, this research project, now in stage 2, is looking at Paediatric and Adolescent Rheumatology, to understand why and how art therapy is an effective psychological tool. Putting the child at the centre, it will have direct application to the families Teapot Trust supports, shaping our resource materials for parents and children.

Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust and Newcastle University (current)                                                     

Dr Simon Hackett (Newcastle University) and Dr Sharmila Jandial (Great North Children’s Hospital) are leading a collaborative research project, for which Teapot Trust is a key partner, looking at group art-psychotherapy for anxiety and depression in children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA). The project is jointly funded – part by the hospital charity and part by Teapot Trust.

Historic Service Review of art therapy provided and funded by Teapot Trust in Paediatric Rheumatology departments at Glasgow and Edinburgh Children's Hospitals (2019)                                                                                                                         

In September 2019, a report was finalised following a major historic review of art therapy provided and funded by Teapot Trust in Paediatric Rheumatology departments at Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow and Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh. The review was conducted and the report prepared, in partnership, by Teapot Trust art therapists, Emily Farrugia and Patricia Watts, with clinicians, Joyce Davidson and Jo Walsh. It was important to dedicate time and resources to the review to understand how and why art therapy helps young patients and what role clinical environments can play in the efficacy of treatment. Evidence based research is vital for the sustainability of the service within NHS hospitals as well as equity of access.

92% of the children and young people supported said it helped them to feel better.

The full report is available to read here and a summary of key findings is shown below.

Key findings:

  • Half of the patients referred to art therapy have a diagnosis of JIA (Juvenile Arthritis) which reflects the clinical population
  • High numbers of patients are being treated with Methotrexate
  • The reason cited for the majority of referrals for art therapy was to help patients cope with their diagnosis or the emotional impact of their condition and/or treatment.
  • Patient reported outcomes show significant improvements over the course of treatment for patients in their social and emotional wellbeing.
  • The results also showed the service is well used by referring clinicians as an appropriate psychological support for children and young people with rheumatic diseases.
  • Patient feedback was positive at both sites – over a third felt that art therapy had increased their confidence and they were more able to share feelings with others while 92% said it helped them to feel better about their diagnosis and its effects.
  • Art therapists based at both hospitals were embedded within paediatric rheumatology teams.
  • The dual-site service review enabled clinicians to identify differences and similarities between the RHSC, Edinburgh and RHC, Glasgow, providing valuable information and recommendations on how to effectively embed art therapy within different hospitals.