Almost two years ago, my gramps had a stroke. In the blink of an eye, my beloved, smart, hilarious, tender hearted grandfather who could recite Shakespeare while walking on his hands couldn't piece a sentence together.
Rightfully so, he was confused and angry about being cooped up in the neurology unit for days.
When I visited, I took him for walks around the unit, hoping to find something to distract him.
I kept wishing there was artwork to talk about or books to read. After all, bodies aren't the only things that need tending to in the hospital- a person's body can't do much without nurturing the spirit and the mind. What's more, I needed some way to connect with him to help me through this trying time.
He (and my family) received great care, but I was left thinking there could be more. At the time, I was deeply ingrained in the roll of “granddaughter” and wasn’t thinking too far beyond my grandfather’s recovery. Once he was doing better and with a little distance, I realized that the Memory Maker Project could make a difference.
At the Memory Maker Project, we run art and cultural programs for people with memory loss (many who have had a stroke) where we use art as a way of connecting with people, inspiring conversations, and improving the quality of life of people living with memory loss and their care partners.
Why not bring what we do into hospitals?
Fast forward to present day and take a look at this empty hallway. United Health Services Rehabilitation Unit will soon be home to the first interactive rehab art gallery in our area (and maybe anywhere!).
The walls will house prints of famous artwork (that my gramps helped pick out) accompanied by questions, prompts, and songs intended to engage patients and complement other therapies.
At the Memory Maker Project, we are excited to see this idea come to life!
We can't do it without you! Your donation will offset the cost of...
- Printing costs
- Other things we've surely missed!
Thank you for considering!
Co-Founder & Director of the Memory Maker Project