Title of ArticleBringing out leaders in dementia (bold): creating the conditions for persons to flourish as social leaders
Type of ArticleOriginal Article
Author/sLorna Hill, Frankie Greenwood, Heather Wilkinson, Brendan McCormack and Magdalena Schamberger
ReferenceVolume 12, Issue 2, Article 3
Date of PublicationNovember 2022
KeywordsArts-based methods, bold, creativity, dementia, human flourishing, social leadership


Background: bold (Bringing Out Leaders in Dementia), funded by the Life Changes Trust, is a creative and innovative social leadership project for people in Scotland living with dementia.

Aim: A key part of bold is the bold programme, which takes a person-centred focus to help people empower themselves to flourish through creative methods and personal development. bold brings together people with a diverse range of skills and abilities on an equal footing in a safe and supported space, in which they can explore themselves as ‘social leaders’.

Methods: An interdisciplinary team from the University of Edinburgh and Queen Margaret University collaborated with creative artists from the outset to develop the programme that uses a mixture of arts-based methods to encourage creativity, innovation and imagination to explore and develop leadership potential. These include creative writing, working with clay and collage, improvisation, movement, reflective walking, singing and song writing, voice and breathing, and performing arts. In this article we provide an overview of the programme’s design from its outset and of how the creative methods have been adapted and developed to work online as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Results: A brief overview shows how bold has evolved beyond the online programme and how those who take part continue to find ways to create spaces for people living with dementia to flourish as they become part of the bold community.

Implications for practice:

  • A programme for encouraging and empowering individuals to flourish requires a reflective and person-centred approach in a safe and supported environment
  • Successful outcomes depend on multiple factors, including careful programme delivery planning, good facilitation, and commitment and belief from those who take part
  • An inclusive and accessible approach is beneficial when using creative methods for people living with dementia

This article by Lorna Hill, Frankie Greenwood, Heather Wilkinson, Brendan McCormack and Magdalena Schamberger is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial 3.0 License.

In this section