Newport East AM John Griffiths and I visited Newport's 'Music and Memories' group this week.
Music and Memories, which is co-ordinated by the Alzheimers Society in Newport, provides an opportunity for dementia patients to take part in musical activity in a relaxed social setting. The scheme is based around extensive studies which show that music and singing can help stimulate cognitive activity in dementia and Alzheimers patients, allowing individuals to recall emotions and memories.
Music and Memories is a special project, as I know from my seeing the support it has given my Nan. The group provides individuals who are living with dementia - like my Nan - with an opportunity to reconnect with their past experiences and emotions through music. I know from experience how difficult it can be to see someone you know and love being afflicted by dementia - it is a very cruel disease both for the patient and their family and friends. Whilst there is no cure for Alzheimer's, projects like Music and Memories can be a great source of comfort and support to patients and their families. You can see that new friendships are being forged, and singing together can be a great outlet for expression.
If you know of a relative or friend who might benefit from joining the Music and Memories group, call the Alzheimer's Society in Newport on 01633 665 110 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.