What started as a pie in the sky idea 15 months ago, became a reality yesterday when the London Aquatics Centre became host the largest ‘Singing For The Brain’ extravaganza in the UK! The Dementia Support Manager worked with QEOP Community Sports Manager & QEOP Healthwise Coordinator to bring the Singing For The Brain sessions to Copper Box Arena on a weekly basis which started in June last year. A conversation began about the potential of having a large SFTB event, where lots of Dementia groups & Care Homes could access the activity. Music and singing have been shown to aid brain activity and song words are often the one thing people living with dementia can remember, regardless of how advanced their condition is.
The aim for the event was to help normalise activity for people living with Dementia and their carers, increase the exposure of London Aquatics Centre as a Dementia Friendly Venue, Offer the opportunity for pan London groups to take part and Create a unique experience for those attending, enabling them to go away with ‘feel good’ emotions that will hopefully stay with them for the coming days
The London Aquatics Centre provided a unique backdrop for the event, with the 1m Dive Platform being the stage for the musicians & the raised Dive Pool floor providing the dance floor. 318 participants from Newham, Hackney, Waltham Forest, Tower Hamlets, Croydon, Redbridge, Barking, Havering, Kingston, Hammersmith & Hounslow. Almost 50 volunteers supported the event from both Alzheimer's Society and the Park Champions
The opening address was given by Linda Sullivan – Head of Region (London) Alzheimer’s Society and John Partridge – EastEnders actor & West End Stage star was in attendance throughout the whole event. He addressed the audience and was up on the dance floor singing & dancing with the participants.
Some of the participants had a turn on the mic and gave the audience a rendition of their favourite song!