A new Memory Choir –
The local Rossendale Memory Choir runs weekly in the community. They aim to bring together those with dementia, their friends, relatives and carers, in a relaxed and welcoming environment to reconnect and engage through music.
Activity Coordinator at the home, Tracey Booth, approached the choir after she took some of the residents at the home to their weekly meeting. Tracey wanted to establish an exclusive choir within the home, giving all the residents at the 76-bed home, including those with limited mobility, the opportunity to be involved with the vibrant singing group.
A trial was set up and proved a success, with high engagement from both the dementia and residential members of the home. It was agreed that the ‘Haslingden Memory Choir’ will meet the first Monday of each month, inviting friends and relatives into the home for an afternoon of song.
Tracey said “I approached the choir because I wanted to give all our residents the chance to be involved in something fun and energetic, despite their mobility. Our new choir will bring everyone together to sing a variety of new and classic songs, which will be particularly beneficial to our residents with dementia. We have some fantastic voices in the home and now we have our own choir, everyone can get involved.”
Hatching a plan with Helmshore Primary and Little Stars Nursery –
The home has long-standing relationships with Helmshore Primary School and Little Stars Nursery, who visit the home regularly to take part in joint activities with the residents. The children enjoy reading and singing to the residents across the home, as well as taking part in arts and craft sessions which occur weekly as part of the home’s partnership with The Equal Arts, HenPower project.
This project aims to promote health and wellbeing and battle loneliness and depression in older people by engaging them in arts activities and hen-keeping. The four hens have been residents at the home since 2016 and have become the focal activity with the children from both schools.
“The pupils feel it has been a great benefit to them and that they are really making a difference to the elderly residents’ lives in keeping them company and helping to keep them feeling young” comments Christine Myers, Headmistress at Helmshore Primary School.
“The relationship with Haslingden Hall & Lodge has given our pupils the opportunity to do a variety of activities and in caring for the hens, given them a sense of responsibility, as well as teaching them to work as a team, to be active and be in the outdoors. It is a great project.”
The relationships with the local schools have been established in the past year and has had a significant impact on both the female and male residents in the home.