Theatre and memory work with older people
I am the Artistic Director of Re-Live, a Cardiff-based charity providing a dynamic programme of life story theatre. We work with people living with dementia and their families, military veterans with complex mental health needs, and older adults.
In 2010 I travelled to Japan on a Churchill Fellowship to research creativity in dementia care with Dr Yukimi Uchide. Dr Uchide is a leader in the field of reciprocal approaches in dementia care, manages 16 care facilities and directs a theatre company which promotes a greater understanding of dementia through performances across Japan.
Since my Fellowship I have applied my learning to create a Life Story group, Memoria, for people living with dementia and their families. The Memoria group perform theatre shows for the public and policy makers. I have written and toured a theatre show, Belonging, which reflects the experiences of people affected by dementia, raising awareness of the complex issues around dementia care. I also deliver a training course, Experiencing Dementia, for health and social care professionals.
The Fellowship gave me the life-changing chance to discover new ideas. It continues to influence my practice daily.
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