On Wednesday 10 September, the Deputy Mayor of the London Borough of Barnet, Councillor Alison Cornelius enjoyed a visit to Jewish Care’s Maurice and Vivienne Wohl Campus to see the culmination of a recent creative arts programme, creativity:revealed, run by arts charity Create for participants from Jewish Care’s Michael Sobell Community Centre in Golders Green and residents of Jewish Care’s Selig Court, Otto Schiff and Rela Goldhill.
They were joined by staff, volunteers, friends and family for an energetic dance performance as well as a presentation showcasing photography and sculpture alongside an audio recording of work produced by participants of the creative writing workshops.
The project, has been running since April and brought together older people with dementia, learning disabilities and varying physical abilities to improve their well-being, provide creative stimulation, develop friendships and enhance their quality of life. The sessions enabled by Create’s professional artists got participants involved and active with amazing results.
The workshops placed an emphasis on collaboration and empowering individuals whilst taking part in the creative process. The dance workshops can bring a range of benefits to care home residents and day centre users including: improved cognitive functioning, enjoyment of life, enhanced memory and creative thinking, and cardio-vascular stimulation. The dancer guiding the workshops, Rachel Drazek, recently played the lead role in Crazy Jane, a production about the Moulin Rouge and Toulouse-Lautrec’s muse.
Simon Morris, Chief Executive, Jewish Care spoke at the event commenting; “Art is a tremendous way of connecting with people and many of our members and residents have been moved to take part in this fantastic project.”
Stephen Weinstein, 66, who is a resident of Jewish Care’s Rela Goldhill at Otto Schiff and uses a wheelchair, said, “The last time I had the opportunity to dance was a very long time ago, that’s why it felt great to stand up and get moving in the dance workshops. Coming here to take part in the sculpture, dance and creative writing sessions, I’ve felt happy, relaxed and contented. Taking part in the workshops has made me feel important.”