OKMT is providing online group music therapy to 16 elderly clients of Homelink to help reduce their isolation and improve their mental well-being during the Covid-19 pandemic. OK Music Harmony is group music therapy sessions for elderly people with diagnosed memory problems and other conditions at Homelink Respite Care Centre in Whitton.
- Singing familiar songs and talking about them
- Playing percussion or other instruments, copying rhythm
- Choosing a theme each week with pictures and songs to evoke memories and prompt discussion
- Listening to music to enjoy
- Movement to the music (soft movements)
- The clients engage in a joint activity, giving a positive social experience
- Listening to familiar songs evokes memories and helps them to communicate, express themselves and make friends
- Singing and sharing of memories helps to relax them and make them feel happier.
- Their confidence and sense of worth increases as they sing and play a percussion instrument together in the group
Music is especially beneficial for elderly people with memory problems as memory of music often remains even at late stages, and people can still sing, appreciate and respond to music, which can help them access memories of long ago. Music therapy and singing engage the healthy parts of the brain and can help to restore confidence and reduce anxiety.
We are very grateful to Hampton Fund for funding this project.