Middleton Family Funds SSC’s Memory Café

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A specialized program for individuals experiencing memory loss

McGRATHPR.com – South Shore Conservatory (SSC) is launching a yearlong program SSC Memory Café, where individuals with memory loss and their care partners come together in a safe and supportive environment to participate in activities designed for cognitive awareness, explore educational topics, and join in the creative arts.  This new program, which starts January 18, 2018, is funded by the Middleton family.

A memory café is a social event where, in addition to activities, participants are invited to share refreshment and conversation with others. The goal of the program, which originates from SSC’s Creative Arts Therapies Department, is for guests to enjoy a shared experience, participate in activities that help maximize strengths, and socialize with others in a safe and supportive environment.  For example, if a participant finds it easier to communicate through song or dance, as opposed to talking, they would be encouraged to participate in movement or music activities. Participants choose their own level of interaction and participation.

Activities may include arts-based interests such as music, dance or visual arts; cognitive activities such as playing Trivial Pursuit, Name that Tune, word find or board games; motor activities such as broom ball or corn hole; plus educational talks for care partners on shared interests such as insurance information, dealing with behavioral concerns, and guardianship.

Established in memory of Mike Middleton, a former SSC trustee who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2006 and passed away in 2011, the SSC Memory Café is a wonderful, fitting way for Mike’s family to honor his life and love of music, according to his wife Joan.  A program such as this was not in place when Mike was suffering from Alzheimer’s.

“Mike and I would have appreciated a program like the one South Shore Conservatory will offer in early 2018, for people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.  During Mike’s illness, there was very little available on the South Shore to help the memory impaired.  We developed our own program but it would have benefitted us both to be in a group setting. Until the very end, Mike continued to enjoy and appreciate music.  We hope this program will bring joy and smiles to many people,” says Joan Middleton.

South Shore Conservatory is committed to being an organization that welcomes the widest range of students possible – removing barriers to participation and welcoming everyone in, regardless of ability.  Both its Hingham and Duxbury campuses are wheelchair accessible.  For more detailed information about accessibility, please visit SSC’s Know Before You Go page.

The SSC Memory Café, the only one offered between Quincy and Pembroke right now, will be held the third Thursday of every month, starting January 18, 2018, at One Conservatory Drive, Hingham. There is no cost to join in, and participants do not need to attend every session. Participants are asked, however, to register please contact Eve Montague, Director of Creative Arts Therapies, at 781-934-2731, x20 or e.montague@sscmusic.org prior to the month’s café.

About South Shore Conservatory

South Shore Conservatory, (SSC) has been providing access to and enriching the lives of South Shore residents through music and the arts for over 45 years. Recognized as a national model for arts education by the National Guild for Community Arts Education, SSC is the largest, not-for-profit, community school for the arts in Massachusetts, serving over 3500 students of all ages and abilities at its two beautiful campuses and in partnership with schools, and social service and community agencies throughout the South Shore. Students participate in more than 50 diverse programs in music, dance and drama, with performance playing an important role in overall education. With more than 100 exceptional musicians on faculty, SSC offers 30 professionally produced concerts annually.  Through innovative partnerships, SSC’s Creative Arts Therapies department supports the mental, emotional, and physical health of some of our community’s underserved members, and the ImagineARTS program strengthens pre-reading skills for young learners in Brockton Schools through integrated music and dramatic play. SSC’s campuses are located at One Conservatory Drive, Hingham, (781-749-7565) and 64 St. George Street, Duxbury (781-934-2731). SSC programs are supported in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency. For more information call us, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram or visit www.sscmusic.org.

In keeping with SSC’s inclusive mission to provide access to quality education in the arts for all, the Conservatory offers programs for all segments of the population to enjoy, regardless of age, ability, geography, and financial means.  Furthermore, South Shore Conservatory admits students and families of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school.

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