We recently got creative with the help of Nina Bunyard, a visiting art teacher who showed us some new techniques and shared her ideas.
Green Tree Court Activities Co-Ordinator Merle Weiner commented: “This time we experimented with paints, ink and pencil to create some stunning pictures of fish. Some wonderful pieces of work were produced and our residents enjoyed bringing their art skills to the fore and seeing just what amazing work they could all achieve. Whether you’re an accomplished artist or a novice, there’s a real sense of pride as well as a feeling of accomplishment at the end of the session.”
Our art sessions have far reaching benefits for our residents. They stimulate the mind, offer the chance to make new connections with others, and give everyone the chance to express themselves creatively. They also play a very valuable role in bringing a sense of purpose back into the lives of our residents and can quite simply help to make the day happier.
Does art make a difference for people with dementia?
Art programmes that involve people with dementia seem to suggest benefits including improved social inclusion and improved quality of life. And there’s evidence too that it can improve cognitive skills. A study in America of 256 people with an average age of 87 found that older people who took part in arts and crafts activities were 73% less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment than those who did not.
Regular art sessions, as well as crafts and cookery, are all part of our holistic approach to dementia care. By providing all our residents with the opportunity to take part in a rich and varied programme of activities we can reduce the reliance on medication and in some cases omit it altogether.