Dementia awareness and support
Our library service is committed to supporting and improving the lives of people living with dementia. Although Dementia Action Week (which helps to unite people, workplaces, schools and communities to take action) has been postponed this year, we are continuing to work towards making Cheshire West Libraries a dementia-friendly service.
We have a wonderful collection called 'Reading Well Books on Prescription for Dementia' (all available as eBooks) which not only offer information about dementia and normal ageing, but support and advice on how to live well after diagnosis, practical advice for carers, personal accounts and suggestions for shared therapeutic activities.
Below are some fantastic online resources that we have arranged by subject. These are to support carers, guardians and family members and to help enhance the lives of those living with dementia as well as their own.
Please note: some of the resources may need a carer or family member to help set up on devices.
- Dementia UK: advice for people with dementia and their families, regarding the coronavirus
- Alzheimer’s Society: activity ideas for people living with dementia in the current situation (coronavirus)
- Age Friendly Cheshire West: information and support for families and carers of those living with dementia.
Arts, crafts and activities
- Armchair Gallery: with special features for people living with dementia, Armchair Gallery is an app that brings world-class art & culture to users. It includes instructions for tried-and-tested creative activities to explore with people with dementia.
- Online colouring pages: offers a wonderful choice of colourings, from animals and flowers to vehicles, circus and trains. Online colouring works well on tablets and touch screen devices, where it’s easy to tap and fill the white spaces. This is particularly true for people in the later stages of dementia, when using a pen, pencil or computer mouse may no longer be possible.
- Online jigsaw puzzles of all sizes: variety of online jigsaw puzzles of different sizes depending on ability. You can save your progress, create your own puzzles and much more. It's free and no personal info is required.
- Move it or Lose it: exercise company catering for older adults, offering live workout sessions. The company has also created a support pack for older people providing guidance on how they can keep exercising at home.
- Age UK exercise for the over 50s: gentle exercise and balancing videos available.
- Love to Move (British Gymnastics): age and dementia friendly seated gymnastics programme, which is transforming the lives of people living with dementia.
Film and theatre
- The BFI Free collection: The British Film Institute (BFI) has a large archive collection of free films available including shorts, historical, international, home video, feature films and more.
- Dementia UK: recommends Laurel and Hardy films. “Many people diagnosed with dementia grew up with the slapstick routines of Laurel and Hardy allowing many to reminisce. Their comedic routines can bring enjoyment and distraction.” A lot of films can be found for free on Youtube.
- National Theatre Online: enjoy world class theatre from the comfort of your own home. Live streamed every Thursday evening (7pm) and available to watch anytime for seven days after that.
- The Shows Must Go On: Andrew Lloyd Webber Musicals streamed for free online. Streamed on Fridays and available to watch for 48 hours.
Memories and reminiscence
- BBC Reminiscence Archive: provides access to a selection of content from the BBC Archives, designed to support reminiscence therapy and developed for people with dementia, based on photographs, photo books, boxes of objects and materials and interactive computer applications. To begin, simply select a Theme (such as Sport, Events etc.) or a Decade (1930s, 1940s etc.) and choose whether you wish to have image, audio or video content.
- My House of Memories: My House of Memories (found on NHS app library) allows you to explore objects from the past and share memories together. It can be used by anyone, but has been designed for, and with, people living with dementia and their carers. Browse the objects, which include everyday things such as cinema tickets, a Singer sewing machine and a 10-shilling note. Save your favourite objects to a digital memory tree, digital memory box or timeline. Upload your own photos to share precious personal memories with the people you care for.
- BBC Music Memories:BBC Music Memories is designed to use music to help people reconnect with their most powerful memories. Evidence shows that music can help people - including those living with dementia - to feel and live better. Create a playlist and take part in the survey to discover the nation’s favourite music memories.
- The ‘D’ word: the UK’s only dementia based radio show.
- Music Hall song: a collection of Music Hall pieces to stimulate memories, including Florrie Ford (Queen of the Music Hall).
- Music Mirrors: ‘Music Mirrors’ is a brief life story of someone (with dementia), written in their own words, with sounds and music embedded to spark memories later. Not a playlist but a memory toolkit. Participants will need to be assisted in registering to the site.
- Playlist for Life: using music to connect people with dementia to their family members and carers. People can make a personal playlist alone, with their partner, or remotely with family members. Family members can also make playlists for each other and share musical memories.