Blooming Memories Thru Music offers complementary residential music engagement sessions for elders living with Alzheimer's in Bloomington, Indiana.
This volunteer driven initiative provides a specialized self-contained headphones which are pre-loaded with 30 favorite songs from their youth.
Adult trainers may assist families in the use of their own electronic equipment to deliver music, usually with the use of a headphones.
Research explains use of headphones promotes greater benefits by increasing focus with the eliminations of extraneous noise or voices in the nearby area. Headphones are encouraged, especially in more advanced stages of the brain disorder.
Volunteers age 18+ create custom playlists while building intergenerational communication and instruct caregivers on the benefits of a daily music routine to stimulate the brains of their loved one.
Our volunteers seem to join our mission with passionate stories of loved ones they live with or have lost to Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia and breain disorder.
Several of our IU volunteers major in cognitive sciences, music, music education, pre-med, psychology, nursing, biology or speech and hearing. Several double majors have shared visions of graduate work to "make a difference" in the field of cognitive disorders, to become a neuroscientist, to become a brain surgeon or geriatric psychiatrist, find a cure for Alzheimer's or plan doctoral research to show how music changes the brain waves and increases synapses. The minds of our local college students are amazing, especially coupled with their desire to offer community service to a great cause.
Families go to great lengths to arrange for their loved one with Alzheimer's to age in place in the family home.
All too often the caregiver, with a constant, demanding and complex role becomes isolated. We hope to ease that feeling of separation by bringing the service to their homes.
Teams of trained adults, including IU students, work with the families and caregivers to train on the benefits of sharing music daily. We encourage caregivers to make room in their daily schedule to share music with the elder or more if the music soothes the elder, thus bringing happiness and fond memories.
Our primary mission is to reduce caregiver stress and decrease elder anxieties during activities of daily living.
Blooming Memories Thru music volunteers exhibit compassion and model empathy for the families living with Alzheimer's.
If you have a story to share or would like to join our team of roving pied pipers with headphones in hand, see our Facebook page or use the Volunteer Network links to reach us.