A shorter Find it Friday this week as the objects relate to a project that is literally still in its pre-planning stages.
The Curatorial Services were contacted a few weeks ago concerning photographs and video clips in the collection that could be used in outreach sessions for people suffering with Dementia.
Outreach is a very important service for museums to have and for people suffering from a condition that affects the memory this simple reach from us to them can create a huge difference in their mood and overall produce a much more positive quality of life.
The great thing about memory is that it can be accessed via a simple sound, smell or object, transporting you back to a time and to a place you once experienced and the feelings you once felt. This is essential for dementia sufferers; to look at a photograph or hold an object can bring back the memories once lost, it allows for the re-exploration of their histories and the opportunity to once more connect with their families and friends.
Memories are often the most important thing to people so to lose them is unimaginable. The significance of a memory to an individual can not be measured and to be able to recall a memory often results in the desire to share, reminisce and to take a rewarding trip down memory lane.
From a simple collections item someone can gain so much; from something as mundane as a washboard or donkey stone memories of being a child and growing up around your mother cleaning about the house can come flooding back, this leaves a liberating and happy feeling, essentially stimulating the person and relaxing them at the same time. To be able to offer this to someone is an honour for any museum, it is undeniably one of the most important things a museum can do.
So, we have been asked to find some of our collection items for such a task; the details of the task I am not completely aware of yet but I have been put on photograph duty and these are some of the lovely photographs I have already come across: