The Salvation Army recently launched a dynamic programme for people living with dementia, which uses singing to help them connect with others and bring back memories.
Major Liz Hancock, Corps Officer at Chester-le-Street has been visiting Grangewood for around three years, and last month piloted ‘Singing By Heart’ at the care home, in the hopes of rolling out a programme in other care homes in the area.
It is well-know that music can trigger memories and feelings from the past and the singing sessions help those who are living with dementia reconnect those memories.
Kirsty Crozier, home manager said, “We like the therapy sessions, because we feel that the residents engage with it. Music tends to be the one thing that people actually do engage with, and for those who have communication difficulties they seem to really come to life through the sessions - especially if it’s songs that they recognise as well, they tend to hum along and clap along. Even those who don’t normally communicate, will be clapping or moving their body and you can also see the enjoyment through their facial expressions.
Music is definitely the one thing that gets people going and it does engage everybody – as well as the staff!”