Arts are not a luxury, they are a right, Culture, Arts and Leisure Minister Carál Ní Chuilín has said.
The Minister set out her position when she spoke at the cultural participation, marginalisation and resistance event tonight.
The Minister said: “Arts, culture and leisure are not a luxury, they are a right. They are part of everyone’s heritage. There are also emerging needs in relation to arts with regard to those who have never had access to culture and arts, such as children and young people who are in care.
“I am talking primarily about people who are most vulnerable and I am determined to give people in that situation an opportunity to participate in the arts. The arts can provide a means to develop skills, encourage learning, improve health and well-being, explore culture and, of course, provide entertainment.
“As well as these benefits, the participation itself is a big thing – to be part of something. Whether going to a show, taking part in a drama class or participating in an Irish class, it gives a feeling of belonging. Everyone needs that feeling and culture can do that.
“Culture has the power to transform lives and is essential to a thriving community. My department is committed to harnessing culture, arts and leisure to promote equality and tackle poverty and social exclusion.”]]>