Sing For Your Life South West
Sing For Your Life South West is a registered charity who support the health and wellbeing of older people using participatory musical activities, particularly singing.
Sing for Your Life delivers a range of programmes to support people with long term health conditions,
Singing is an activity that accesses the long-term memory. This can also be especially helpful for those who are coming to terms with living with Dementia, or have had a stroke or have been diagnosed with Parkinson's. The Music Box, whose programmes are designed by the charity Sing For Your Life, has proved successful in a variety of placements - residential care homes, hospitals and community centres.
The Music Box is simple to use and does not require any formal musical training to operate. It is therefore a considerable asset that can be used by any staff member, nursing or otherwise and at any time. It enables clients to gain from the many benefits that this group activity allows on a regular (daily) singing basis - a lot more often than is usually possible. It plugs into a television, or it can be operated through a projector & speakers.
The bespoke piano accompaniment is designed to replicate singing round the piano in a pub or in the home. Unlike a Karaoke machine, which has a lot going on via the visual & musical backgrounds which can be confusing to many patients, the Music Box has been adapted to provide a simple colour background with only the words being displayed. Crucially, the key and speed can be changed to suit each individual patient group. It is also possible to show images on the screen which has been found to be very useful in the field of reminiscence.
The positive benefits of singing on our health and wellbeing are increasingly being documented. Some of the key findings over the past few years are that it:
- provides excellent cognitive stimulation therapy
- helps reduce stress & anxiety whilst increasing energy levels
- provides an inclusive activity (specially for those who are socially isolated)
- provides an effective reminiscence experience
- provides an inter-generational opportunity
Sing For Your Life are also producing a set of DVDs which feature their successful group participatory singing programmes which are already enjoyed by community groups, and people living in care homes or hospital. This is to enable elderly people living in the community to have access to the activities within their own homes.
We have adopted the mantra "a song a day keeps the doctor away!"
Singing is truly a wonderful therapeutic activity and what is becoming increasingly clear to us is that there is growing body of clinical evidence that can prove it!
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