Thursday, 12 December 2019

Music and dance helps bring back happy memories

Music and dance helps bring back happy memories

A MUSICIAN and comedian brought a touch of nostalgia to the Bluebells Day Centre in Henley.

Chris Ody performed songs for about 20 people at the Christ Church Centre in Reading Road.

Bluebells provides social engagement, activities and care for people suffering with dementia and disabilities.

Co-ordinator Suri Poulos said: “Through our service, we are able to offer respite to their primary carers. I am a carer myself and I really enjoy working with the elderly.

“It is such a good solution to the isolation that the elderly experience and particularly those who have dementia.

“We try to create a happy atmosphere. It is really rewarding and I really enjoy it. People let you know that they have enjoyed it as well.

“We always do lots of singing. Even some of our guests who don’t like talking get involved with the singing. It is very therapeutic and helps them to build their confidence.”

Mr Ody played Bring Me Sunshine, which rekindled memories of watching episodes of The Morecambe and Wise Show.

Visitors were encouraged to dance as he played his guitar and told jokes.

Mr Ody said: “Ken Dodd gave me some good advice once. He said that every day you should exercise your chuckle muscle. If you have a little laugh it keeps you young.”

Bluebells used to be funded by Age UK but relaunched as an independent charity in April with help from the former Mayor of Henley Glen Lambert, who is the chairman.

The service expanded from one to two days a week in September and visitors now meet on Monday and Thursday every week at the Christ Church Centre from 10.30am to 3.30pm.

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