BEING PART OF THE TEAM
Many care homes and care facilities provide wonderful group activities for their residents or service-users, encompassing arts and culture. Choirs, group workshops and lounge-based recreation abound, and are proven to be extremely positive to those involved. My own practice originally started out in such ventures, and I enjoy immensely playing for the congregated residents in care home lounge scenarios.
Once given the opportunity to play to people in the comfort of their rooms, I fully recognised it's value. As I went room-to-room, guided by staff members, I understood how rewarding the process could be for everybody.
Each person is given time to express themselves, to share something of their experience and hear or sing a song especially for them.
The music transported them, soothed or uplifted, and importantly proved an able facilitator for communication.
During my time piloting the Musical Walkabout I have made researching the needs of all involved a way of furthering my practice. The principal message I gained from my discussions with everybody - residents, family and friends, and staff - was a desire for more time.
It is an honour to have witnessed the unfailing kindness, patience and dedication of staff and volunteers at many care homes and other facilities, and my primary goal is to become part of their team - to support participants of the Musical Walkabout and aid the improvement of their overall wellbeing.
WHO CAN TAKE PART?
Everyone! Residents/clients, family, friends, staff, service-users, patients or practitioners...
MUSICAL WALKABOUT CIC
The Musical Walkabout CIC (Community Interest Company) began as a 1-2-1 way of engaging more isolated residents of care homes with music. In this iteration of the project, Nina is guided like a minstrel by a staff member room-to-room, meeting and playing (with her voice and guitar) for individual residents.
Special care is taken to choose songs which will bring the most enjoyment, engagement or relaxation to participants.
Everyone is encouraged to contribute their ideas as well as sharing stories, comments and feelings related to music and their experiences of it.
Those residents otherwise unable or reluctant to join in group activities show signs of involvement, delight and appreciation upon being sung to or with; the Musical Walkabout fosters inclusivity!
With that in mind, the project has begun to broaden it's reach into new sectors - including mental health - and is flexible enough to be beneficial to any area of our communities experiencing social isolation.
Maybe you have an idea for a group or project the Musical Walkabout CIC could get involved with? Why not drop me a line, and get the conversation started!