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Start in Salford creative arts and wellbeing centre

“Start is the beginning of something special. An opportunity to be creative, to learn, to grow, and to live”

About Us - Start: arts and wellbeing

UPDATE 18/03/20

"In light of the recent UK Government advice as of Friday 20th March START will be postponing all of its sessions both at Brunswick House and out in the community in a pledge to avoid 'non-essential' contact with others.

Over the coming days we will be in touch with all of our members and volunteers to inform them of the closures, ensuring that they have support in place during this difficult time of uncertainty.

This will no doubt have an impact on many of our service users however we have a duty of care in line with government restrictions. The protection of the vulnerable communities which we are honoured to serve remains our priority however and staff will endeavour to stay connected with our members and volunteers through telephone, email and online during this period." Bernadette Conlon CEO, START



Many vulnerable people in our community are too often left on the sidelines or hidden from view. Yet plenty have untapped potential and are capable of achieving extraordinary things. START exists to nurture those talents and bring about a newfound confidence in those who feel isolated or excluded. With our help, members learn valuable new skills and their stories are truly inspirational.

From our fully resourced centre at Brunswick House, members have access to some excellent facilities, including art and media studios, craft workshops and gardens. We also work in a number of community venues across Salford.

It is from here that professional tutors bring out the best in our members, so that they can grow in confidence, build self-esteem and become valued contributors to the wider community.

How getting creative improves mental health

The creative activities we provide at START have been successful in helping people overcome emotional difficulties and reach new heights. The opportunity to be creative acts as a social outlet for our members as well as being a great way to learn new skills. It empowers them to express themselves more clearly and come to a better understanding of their place in the world and what they are capable of achieving.

With this knowledge and confidence, our members go on to further training, volunteering and employment. Some have made extraordinary progress and have even come back to us in the role of tutor or mentor. It’s a measure of just how much our members can achieve once they summon up the courage to first walk through our door.

Five Simple Steps to Improve Wellbeing

At START, we focus on five steps that lead people to become better, more positive and more aspirational individuals. Watch our video to see these principles in action, and be inspired yourself!

Connect... Talk and listen to people around you. Share experiences with friends, family, colleagues and neighbours.

Be active... Go for a walk, play a game, dance. Whether indoors or outdoors, alone or with others, exercise is as good for the mind as it is for the soul.

Take notice... Be curious, ask questions and learn to see the beauty in all that surrounds you, taking time to think about what really matters.

Keep learning... Try something new, rediscover an old interest, join a group or take a course. Never stop learning – it makes life much more interesting.

Give... Take some time out to help someone. A nice gesture, no matter how big or small, will make you feel better as well as the person you’re helping. Take pride in the difference you make.