Memories Choir hits all the right notes

Baptcare’s Memories Choir recently had their first public performance as part of Dementia Awareness Month activities. Attendees at the Dementia Australia Network Geelong (DANG) event joined the choir to sing a couple of favourites, including What a Wonderful World.

The Memories Choir is joint initiative of Baptcare’s Geelong team and Dementia Australia, for people living with memory loss and their family and carers get together in a fun and supportive environment.

“Sharing music with someone living with memory loss or dementia can be rewarding,”said Chris McGath, Dementia Consultant with Dementia Australia in Newtown.

“Activities that involve music can be an effective way of communicating with a person who has dementia. Often when other skills have gone, the person can still enjoy old familiar songs and tunes. Music can awaken parts of the brain not affected by dementia and we can see responses such as singing, movement, reconnection and joy.”

“A certain piece of music can unlock memories and feelings, and a big advantage of music is that it does not require a long attention span and it can also be a valuable trigger for reminiscing.”

The idea for the choir came to Jake Holz, Baptcare’s In Home Care Team Leader for the Barwon Southwest Region, after he saw an inspiring story about Canberra’s demetia-friendly Alchemy Chorus on the ABC.

“I looked around where we are based – the Cloverdale Baptist Church in Corio – and realised that we have the space, we have instruments, we even have a recording studio here,” said Jake. “It ticked all the boxes, including the chance for carers to join in and enjoy a positive and settling experience with their loved one with our support, or to get some much-needed respite.” “Participants don’t need to be great singers, – just open to sharing some great music including some of the old favourites,” said Jake.


If you or someone you know could enjoy being part of the Memories Choir, contact Baptcare on 03 5247 7700 or email commcare.barwon@baptcare.org.au


READ OUR POST ON LEARNING ABOUT DEMENTIA


READ MORE HOME CARE NEWS AND STORIES

Email:

Other Home Care blog stories

25 Sep 2018

Watch Arzu's story: Care management in home care packages

25 Sep 2018

How a visit at home can help to get started with home care

As a Baptcare Customer Liaison Consultant in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs, Melissa McPherson plays a vital role in facilitating home care services for older people in the local community. A home care provider with local knowledge and experience One part of Melissa’s role is to act as Baptcare’s first point of contact for people who need some assistance at home. “I go out to their home, talk with them about what they need, and discuss how we can assist them to continue living in the comfort of their own home. Also, many people struggle with the My Aged Care process, so I help them to understand it,” Melissa says. A second important aspect of Melissa’s work is her liaison with other community services that support older people. “I spend time visiting local practices to discuss how Baptcare can support them with the great work they do. Healthcare professionals find it very reassuring that our home care services include nursing and allied health.” “I also give talks to people in the broader community who may be able to benefit from home care, including residents of retirement living villages and organisations such as Carers Victoria. In some cases, people don’t even know that home care services like ours are available,” Melissa says. According to Melissa, it is important that Baptcare has a presence in the local community. “Most people prefer to have a local provider. It’s the trust factor – if you’re choosing a home care provider, you want someone who knows the area.” “It’s also important to the local community that Baptcare is a Government-approved provider that meets the Home Care Standards set out by the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency. Not all providers can state this. So we are a trusted advisor by medical professions and an approved provider by the government.” Giving back to the community Baptcare has been a community-oriented organisation from the beginning, according to Melissa. “Since its inception more than 70 years ago, Baptcare’s purpose has always been to help people and give back to the community – and that purpose is exactly the same today. The reason I love working here is that my values align with the Baptcare values. I aim to help people live at home longer and happier.”

20 Sep 2018

Memories Choir hits all the right notes