Memory Lane was born after a Cranleigh Conversation initiated by SMART Cranleigh where people met with an interest in supporting people living with dementia and giving their carers a break. The new groups were set up on Friday mornings and first and third Monday afternoons . We have now managed to co-ordinate all the activities that would benefit this group across the community with the help of the SMART Cranleigh dementia Support newsletter bringing the events together in a co-ordinated way. This is a collaborative project with volunteers from St Nicolas Church, SMART Cranleigh and the Leisure Centre, Cranleigh Arts Centre, The Good Care Group, and several people from the community who want to lend a hand or to bring a particular skill, whatever their age.
It has been a joy to experience the willingness, joy and passion that has been expressed during these sessions- it is clear to see this engagement on people’s faces benefiting everyone, not just the people with dementia. We have recently been supported by the Hunter Centre, a speech and language therapist who will help with training for volunteers, a music therapist, Anne who has just moved into Cranleigh , a student undertaking psychological therapy training. Last week Anne brought her harp and the Arts Centre managed to find rather a grand pianoSeeing the piano enabled another local person with musical ability to offer to play at future sessions.
New experiences – Below shows Gill and Tim enjoying a craft activity and Anne introducing the harp to a fascinated group of people.
Working together : We have been so delighted to see the range of people from all parts of the community taking part – Being a warm, friendly and welcoming group is fundamental to its success. It is great to see different parts of the community joining together to make such a difference to a growing group of people living in and around our community who can be easily forgotten.
Speakers are organised for carers for some weeks and other times they enjoy sharing among themselves. This is work in progress and there is a lot more to be done. Please get in touch if you are interested. Spontaneity is key and this includes singing and dancing at the drop of a hat depending on the mood of the moment!