Project

Magic Moments

Following Magic Me’s success designing and delivering bespoke projects for Care Homes, Extra Care Schemes and other older people’s venues in 2020 - 21, we received funding from Essex County Council to build upon our work with care professionals. 

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Magic Moments in Essex

Following Magic Me’s success designing and delivering bespoke projects for Care Homes, Extra Care Schemes and other older people’s venues in 2020 – 21, we received funding from Essex County Council to build upon our work with care professionals. 

Between August – October 2021, Magic Me connected care professionals in Essex with artists. Together they designed and facilitated new creative activities that were delivered with older people with a range of needs. The project focused on creating connections and creative experiences with and for residents unable to (or who prefer not to) leave their bed or room and those less likely to join group activities.

Connecting care professionals and artists

“Magic Me was the magnet that drew everyone together.”

Care professional, Quenby Care Home

Led by artists Lily Ash Sakula (them/them) and Georgia Akbar (she/her), Magic Me delivered weekly creative sessions with two pilot care homes; Quenby and Edensor. Artists and staff tested different ways to engage in activities that use sensory processes (such as light, touch and colour), experimental film-making and mindfulness.

Artists offered in depth support to staff across the home to develop and deliver activities, both in group and 1-to-1 settings. Care staff were encouraged to feed into the creative process and think about ways they can extend activities in the future.

 

Building a wider network

Alongside weekly workshops at Quenby and Edensor Care Homes, Magic Me brought together a wider group of care professionals from six additional homes to trial activities and share their expertise. Between August – October, we hosted a monthly network meeting aiming to provide fresh creative activities, opportunities for care professionals to connect with staff from other homes and a space to share expertise.

In September 2021, Lily and Georgia designed three different activity resources (bespoke instruction sheets and a selection of materials) based on creative sessions delivered in the pilot homes.

Care homes in the network trialed these resources in their own homes and their feedback developed an online resource for other care homes in Essex.

Download the full Magic Moments Activity Resource here.

Magic Me’s previous work with Essex County Council

Essex County Council are also a partner in Magic Me’s 4 year Artists’ Residencies in Care Homes programme which began in 2019. The programme sees 4 cutting edge arts organisations partner with 4 Exelcare care homes in different towns in Essex.

In 2016 Susan Langford, our Director, was commissioned to support the setting up and delivery of the Creative Journeys project, run by Essex County Council with Anglia Ruskin University and funded through Arts Council England. She ran a training day for artists from across Essex and co-led the recruitment and selection process to choose two artists for an intergenerational project in Rochford. She then mentored artists Emma Curtis and Jane Gull as they designed and delivered a term long project Party Time.

Susan then worked with the Essex Cultural Development team to run four training days for care home Activities Organisers across the county, on ways to use the arts and intergenerational activity to enhance quality of life for older people.

 

Magic Moments was funded by Essex County Council

Photo credits on this page: Lily Ash Sakula and Georgia Akbar

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