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Alzheimer Uniti opens new Alzheimer Café in Rome

Wednesday 31 May 2017

Alzheimer Uniti (AU) has opened a new Alzheimer Café in the centre of Rome in the well-known International Women’s House. This is the 6th Alzheimer Café that AU has opened in Rome. The International Women’s House is located in a 17th century convent and in recent years was set up as a place for promoting the rights of women as well as encouraging the concept of hospitable (friendly!) communities. It is indeed a good place for an Alzheimer Café!

The first two meetings were in May and the opening session included accordion music played energetically by the musician Giuliana Soscia. At the second session the guest of honour was the famous theatre and television actor, Massimo Reale, who entertained the audience (people with dementia and their caregivers) with stories about the acting profession. He then read poetry that was specifically requested by the participants in the room. One person with dementia asked the actor to read a poem by the famous 19th century poet Giacomo Leopardi entitled “Saturday Evening in the Village”, which every pupil in Italy studies at school. This, together with other episodes, convinces us that the Alzheimer Café is an excellent place to stimulate memories, get people to interact with each other and promote socialisation, when there is often isolation and stigma.