The joys of singing and music for those living with dementia
Music is a very powerful tool. It has the power to influence our moods, bring back memories, even inspire us to sing along and dance. At Brendoncare, we recognise the importance of music in dementia care within our care homes and at our community clubs.
Music has a unique ability to connect people, bringing about positive changes in their lives, helping them to express their feelings and make special memories
There is no better example than the two music-related clubs that meet at Brendoncare Otterbourne Hill’s Community Hub – Singing for the Brain and Sing for Fun.
The success of Singing for the Brain at Otterbourne Hill is the result of a continuing partnership between Brendoncare Clubs and home care company, Home Instead. Brendoncare Clubs provide the venue, supporting volunteers and staff to which both the Clubs and Home Instead add the elements of fun, friendship and a warm welcome to all.
Every fortnight, alternating with the Memory Lane café, participants join in with a wide range of songs. They can be songs from the shows, “London” songs or hit songs from the past 50 to 60 years.
The group’s main purpose is to create community spirit, but certain songs can unlock special memories and strong emotions. Singing is also fantastic for reducing stress and improving wellbeing. Members often like to play along with instruments such as tambourines or to dance to the music.
Sing for Fun is an afternoon singalong session which has really taken off. It is open to Brendoncare club members and, as with all our clubs, is dementia-friendly, fun and welcoming. Members are singing, the aim being to put on a performance for a special event such as Christmas. They choose the songs together, create a playlist, then practice and perform. Volunteers who can play an instrument are always welcome to come along and join in.
There is also a Gosport Voices community group, while online clubs include a monthly variety hour with entertainer Steffi and a Virtual Voices singing for fun group.
Musicians and entertainers are also regular visitors to our care homes. Among those we welcome are theatre companies presenting songs from the shows, a harpist and school choirs – always guaranteed to put a huge smile on everyone’s faces.
To find out more about our singing clubs, please call: 01962 857099 or email: email@example.com. Full details are on the website: https://www.brendoncare.org.uk/community, where you can click on Community Clubs or Online Clubs to see a list of all the clubs.