Basket | Login | Register


“Getting involved in Cultural Activities even when we have Dementia” - by Idalina Aguiar member of the EWGPWD

Tuesday 31 January 2017

This text was written with the visual aid of photos of the event described and supported by the psychologists that work with me during cognitive stimulation sessions.

In January 2017, I visited the Ethnographic Museum of Madeira (pictured) with other people with dementia that attend activities in the Madeira Delegation of Alzheimer Portugal.

We know that many people with dementia often don’t participate in social activities, and reason can be the stigma and the fear. I know we must combat it. I never left these kinds of activities and my family and friends have always motivated me to do anything I loved to do.

Last Christmas, me and my colleagues in the Delegation built a recycled Christmas Tree for the Ethnographic Museum of Madeira. I had an idea: Visit the Museum (that is a little far away from where we are), combat the stigma showing that we are willing to participate in social activities, and to talk about European Working Group of People with Dementia (EWGPWD), to which I belong.

My proposal was very well received and everybody got excited. I felt that I was doing something for the people with dementia and their integration in society.

My colleagues in the Delegation loved the trip and as soon we got to the museum, the other visitors and the community that were present there (the museum receives students from local schools) were very curious about us and some exclaimed “do they really have dementia?” Yes, we have, but we are still people involved in their society.

We loved visiting the recycled Christmas tree exhibition, and we could identify ours and then we saw the permanent collection.

With this last visit, we remembered how life was many years ago, how we cooked in old kitchens, how the ladies knitted big rugs…So it was a visit to show how we exist and love these cultural visits and to remember.

At the end, I explained what the EWGPWD is, and the work of this group.

Idalina Aguiar, member of the EWGPWD, Madeira, Portugal.