Western Horizon Care Center Joins Music and Memory Program

Looking for Skilled iTunes Volunteer and CD Donations

Staff Report

Western Horizon Care Center recently joined a group of 35 North Dakota nursing homes in implementing the Music & Memory program in their facility. The program uses music to engage residents by creating playlists of a resident’s favorite music and putting that music on iPods for them to enjoy. Often this music can unlock fond memories from their youth or special events in their lives. Specific artists and songs are the key to Music & Memory’s success and individual, personalized playlists are created and downloaded to individual iPods. The playlists are tailored to each resident and can help to stimulate or relax the resident, as desired. Music is known to stimulate the brain in unique ways and the program has had success in care facilities across the nation.
Western Horizons Care Center has created a Music & Memory team to initiate the program at their facility, but is hoping to find a volunteer who is skilled in the use of iTunes. That volunteer would help develop and organize playlists for a starting group of about 5-10 residents. It is important that such a volunteer already have acomprehensive understanding of the use of iTunes.
The Care Center is also asking the community for donations of CDs that might be used on the residents’ playlists. Favorite music, especially from the past, in all genres are welcome – country western, religious, musicals, big band, rock and roll, etc. Donated CDs will help with the cost of creating the playlists, as any songs from iTunes must be purchased.
This program was made possible through the generosity of ND Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes. The funds provided iPods, ear phones, iTunes gift cards, and a computer for creating and organizing the playlists. The program is valuable, not only for those with dementia, but for all those currently living at Western Horizons Care Center.
Those interested in volunteering to assist with iTunes or in donating CDs can contact Marla Archibald at marlaa@wrhs.com.

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