Able Care are always innovative in ensuring that their activities are meaningful and engaging. Recently they engaged with the Bristol Ageing Better – Kickstart Funding and have been successful in getting funds to support a new activity. Manager Teresa sent us this information:
Bristol Ageing Better has committed £250,000 to help kick start community activities that will help reduce isolation and loneliness amongst older people in Bristol. The Community Kick-Start fund allows Organisations, groups and individuals to seek up to £2,000 for a new activity.
We recently had a taster session with Music Therapy with Stephen at one of our Care Homes with excellent feedback from the residents and staff present. Music therapy is a new activity idea and completely different from music education as it focuses on health, functioning and wellbeing. Every person is unique and Stephen’s music therapy sessions are person-centred based. During a music therapy session the residents are invited to experiment music and sounds using a variety of instruments. No previous musical experience is needed and the focus is to support residents in expressing themselves creatively through sounds, silences, songs, rhythm and words. An evaluation was completed after the taster session and the feedback was as follows; all the residents present thoroughly enjoyed the session and responded well to Stephen. One resident who usually chooses not to join in actively participated and said he would like to join in with future music therapy sessions. Another resident who had been a little unsettled at the start of the session quickly became very relaxed and moved her hands to the rhythm of the music and said ‘more, more’. Each music session is tailored to the residents needs, whether in a small group or on a one-to-one basis according to the residents preferred choices and needs and interests, creating an inclusive and supportive environment. The one-to-one sessions would be particularly beneficial for some of the residents who do not wish to socialise/interact with others in groups preferring to socialise on a more personal level. These one-to-one sessions would reduce any isolation or loneliness they have previously experienced.
Stephen also regularly provides presentations/workshops with the staff in order to increase awareness and knowledge of music therapy, The workshops are particularly important for the carers in order to involve them to create an inclusive working environment and comprehend the meaning and value of music therapy for the elderly and to ensure the residents individual therapeutic goals and objectives are being met during the sessions.
For every session a music therapy report will be compiled by Stephen for both groups and one-to-one sessions and will be given to the Care Homes.
At Able Care Homes we were very excited about this new activity and the positive feedback received and put in a bid to the Kick-Start Funding. We were thrilled when our application for Kick-Start funding was successful and have now set some dates for Stephen to visit each home.