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Design interventions to repair migrants’ mental well-being: The ‘Culture in Mind’ healing space

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The intention of this article is to present the transformation of a space that houses a migrant-oriented community service with a focus on mental health and well-being (Culture in Mind) into an inviting milieu, which fosters healing processes, intercultural understanding and community empowerment in Brisbane, Australia. This project, which was formed as a case study, is described through its ideation phase, the installation methods, the sourcing and use of reclaimed materials as well as the methods employed for the collection of data, including interviews conducted for the evaluation of the design interventions. In like manner, the outcomes of the data analysis are discussed in conjunction with evidence provided by relevant studies and photos collected through the documentation process. The final part of the article is dedicated to arguing the necessity of different understandings of mental health according to non-western cultural backgrounds so as to inform the design of mental health services and physical settings and enhance sentiments of privacy, safety and dignity for migrant patients.
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Keywords: community; design psychology; healthcare design; intercultural; mental health; migrants

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2018

More about this publication?
  • The course of cultures at both local and global levels is crucially affected by migratory movements. In turn, culture itself is turned migrant. This journal will advance the study of the plethora of cultural texts on migration produced by an increasing number of cultural practitioners across the globe who tackle questions of culture in the context of migration. They do this in a variety of ways and through a variety of media. To name but a few relevant aspects of this juncture of migration and culture, questions of dislocation, travel, borders, diasporic identities, transnational contacts and cultures, cultural memory, the transmission of identity across generations, questions of hybridity and cultural difference, the material and oral histories of migration and the role of new technologies in bridging cultures and fostering cultural cross-pollination will all be relevant. Methodologies of research will include both the study of 'texts' and fieldwork.
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