Lights Up memory club comes to Carterton
Unlocking memories through the arts is having such a positive impact on people attending the ‘Lights Up’ arts and memory club in Chipping Norton that a second West Oxfordshire club is opening in Carterton.
Starting on Thursday 12 June, Carterton ‘Lights Up’ will be encouraging anyone living with dementia, including friends, families and carers, to come together and build friendships and learn new skills.
Set up by West Oxfordshire District Council, ‘Lights Up’ will meet twice a month and will include a host of activities to stimulate the mind, such as sharing experiences, making music, art and storytelling.
Recent studies have shown engagement with the arts brings benefits to both those with dementia and their loved ones through sharing activities. It also accesses the creative part of the brain, which overrides the stresses of memory loss and restores a sense of personal identity. It helps reduce feelings of isolation and seclusion that many people with dementia experience as they struggle to communicate with others.
Cllr Richard Langridge, Cabinet Member for Communities, said: “Living with dementia brings many challenges and this Club aims to help those affected to cope with the everyday strains and stresses they face. We are pleased to be setting up our second ‘Lights Up’ club, which we believe will not only offer creative thinking but help to reduce the feeling of being isolated from society.”
West Oxfordshire District Council is working with a host of organisations to run the ‘Lights Up’ arts and memory club in Carterton including Cottsway Housing. Funding applications are also being considered by Oxfordshire County Council and Carterton Town Council.
Volunteers help to run the Club and sessions are led by professionals and artists with experience of working with older people. Anyone wishing to volunteer should contact Val McKay on 01451 810637.
Cllr Mark Booty, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Health, said: “West Oxfordshire has one of the largest proportions of people aged 55 and over of all the Oxfordshire districts and we know that there is an increasing prevalence of dementia amongst an ageing population. Two years ago we formed the West Oxfordshire Dementia Alliance along with NHS partners, voluntary groups and other organisations to improve services and give support. ‘Lights Up’ arts and memory club was set up by the District Council in October 2012 to support people living with dementia and it is a shining example of how this type of support is working in the community.”
The club begins on Thursday 12 June and will run on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month, from 10.30am to 12.30pm; meeting at Blenheim Court, Sycamore Drive, Carterton OX18 3BX. People can turn up on the day and do not need to book in advance.
For more information contact Val McKay on 01451 810637 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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