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Green Candle Dance

Improved health and wellbeing through dance activities for people in different stages of dementia

What we do

Remember to Dance is run by Green Candle Dance Company for people in different stages of dementia and their carers. The project has included people with advanced dementia attending Mile End Hospital in east London, and a group with more recent diagnoses who were still living in the community, which is now in its third year.

The programme consists of weekly one-and-a-half hour dance sessions, accompanied by live music, in which participants warm up, stretch, learn dance sequences, improvise with props and help create dances, both seated and standing. Voice and percussion instruments are also used and rhythm is a vital element. The sessions are relaxed and enjoyable, but physically, creatively and mentally challenging.

The first two years of the project were the subject of a research study by the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health at Canterbury Christ Church University. The study found that participants experienced a greater sense of health and wellbeing, improved quality of life, motivation and learning, and raised artistic interest/ability. Green Candle Dance could take on additional programmes in Greater London and parts of Essex and Kent.

… it has been a great pleasure to work with the programme of dance for people with dementia. Alongside other organisations in our local Dementia Partnership, we have referred people to the programme and have noted that, against the robust outcomes monitoring, people have shown improvements in all kinds of function, from cognitive reasoning to social interaction.

James Monger, Senior Manager, Age UK Redbridge, Barking and Havering

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