The Stepping Stones programme promotes positive mental health and provides regular long-term opportunities for young people in Hampshire to use creativity to build emotional resilience. The high-quality sessions are delivered by professional artists and held in our museums and within education and community settings, as well as Bursledon House at Southampton Children’s Hospital.

For six years Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT) worked in partnership with Hampshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) on two projects that provided innovative, creative support for young people experiencing challenges managing their emotional and psychological health, ICE (Inspire, Create, Exchange) and ICE Heritage.

The successor to these two programmes is Stepping Stones, which is generously supported by The Murray Parish Trust and builds on learnings from the two ICE projects. Continuing HCT’s mission to enable young people to access high-quality arts and culture across the county.

The children and young people taking part are referred through partners such as wellbeing centres, care providers, schools and social prescribing networks to attend courses which will include art journaling, ceramic making and gardening skills. Participants can also self-refer via the online form below.

The first phase will take place in the following locations: 

Allen Gallery, Alton 

Taster sessions: Wednesday 14 or Friday 16 February, 10.30am - 12.30pm

10-week programme: Saturdays from 16 March to 1 June (no sessions 30/03 or 06/04), 10.30am - 12.30pm

Programme focus: Ceramics and the natural world with artist Jill Maguire.


Willis Museum, Basingstoke 

Taster sessions: Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 April, 10.30am - 12.30pm

10-week programme: Saturdays from 11 May – 27 July (no sessions 25 May or 20 July), 10.30am - 12.30pm

Programme focus: Art journaling with artist Deborah Porter


How to get involved: 

To be eligible for this programme you need be aged 11 – 17 years. 

To register your interest, complete the form by clicking the button below. 


  • Hot air balloon with the inscription ' Don't be afraid to be you'
  • Young person using stamps to create artwork
  • Young person using scissors to customise a shoe
  • Young person drawing with a pen
  • Work made by young people in the ICE Heritage project
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