GLASGOW FILM THEATRE and Regional Screen Scotland have been awarded a total of £130,000 to bring the magic of the silver screen to people affected by dementia across Scotland.
Glasgow Film Theatre (GFT) has been awarded £100,000 and will offer monthly ‘Movie Memories’ film screenings at its cinema in central Glasgow, as well as other multi-arts events across the city.
The GFT programme will feature inclusive and friendly screenings, dementia friendly venues and dementia aware staff and volunteers. People with dementia will also play a central role in how the project develops. The GFT aims to reach over 1,700 people living with dementia, as well as their carers and families.
Jaki McDougall, CEO at Glasgow Film Theatre said “Developing a dementia friendly community with cinema at its heart is a vital commitment for GFT, and will be championed by all our volunteers, staff and board.
In a time of social austerity, endeavouring to achieve our ‘Cinema for All’ ethos has never been more crucial. We are so thankful to the Life Changes Trust for enabling us to create this exciting social programme of film screenings and interactive arts events, designed for people living with early to mid-stage dementia, their families and/or carers.
Our vision is to build a lifelong dementia aware cinema community; a social space that recognises people’s needs and is a welcoming safe space for entertainment and stimulation.”
The GFT ‘Movie Memories’ programme will launch on Thursday 19 October with a very special screening of the classic 1949 Ealing comedy ‘Whisky Galore!’ in partnership with Luminate, Scotland’s creative ageing festival.
The second project, from Regional Screen Scotland, has been awarded £30,000. Regional Screen Scotland specialise in community and local cinema provision across the country, especially where communities or individuals are isolated or at a disadvantage.
Regional Screen Scotland are already doing joint events with volunteers from Alzheimer Scotland using their ‘Screen Machine’ mobile cinema, which has led to the development of a pilot project, called ‘Screen Memories Scotland’.
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This project will deliver activities such as reminiscence sessions, dementia friendly screenings, on-line resources and activities and audio and braille resources for people who have visual impairments.
Regional Screen Scotland’s Director Robert Livingston said “Regional Screen Scotland is delighted to have the support of the Life Changes Trust, which will enable our successful trial of activities with Alzheimer Scotland to be developed into a year-long pilot programme to work with cinemas and film groups across Scotland, so that the power of the movies can be tapped to bring pleasure and prompt memories for those living with dementia and similar conditions.”
Anna Buchanan, Director of the Life Changes Trust dementia programme said, “A diagnosis of dementia can often lead to social exclusion and isolation, but dementia friendly communities such as these can help prevent this by keeping people included and supported, and able to participate in things that are meaningful to them. Film can be a powerful medium for emotional connection, nostalgia and also for fun.
Going to the cinema is something that everyone should be able enjoy and look forward to, and these two projects will ensure that people affected by dementia can continue to do something that they may have done their whole lives. We are excited to see what we can learn from these two innovative projects.”