Dubbo residents living with dementia and their carers will be able to benefit from a specialised interactive music therapy program, thanks to funding from the NSW Nationals in the state government.
Nationals Member for Dubbo Dugald Saunders said the grant of $42,440 would fund a Dementia Choir in Dubbo.
“Dementia Choirs have been proven to decrease behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia, while also increasing socialisation during the music sessions,” Mr Saunders said.
“These sessions will help improve the quality and interest of life for the patients by reducing levels of stress, anxiety and depression.”
Lourdes Hospital & Community Health Service Dementia Counsellor Anne Gemmell said the benefits of the program will be significant for both people living with dementia and their carers.
“I’m excited to get a community-based Dementia Choir up and running in Dubbo as I know this will help so many people,” Ms Gemmell said.
“This will be medicine for the brain, with the positive response to music shown to last for hours, or even days.
“There will also be extensive benefits for the carers as well, providing them with respite time, while also improving the mood pre and post practice for the person living with dementia.”
Mr Saunders said he is proud to assist in funding the Dementia Choir.
“This is a fantastic initiative, and I’m looking forward to hearing it in action,” Mr Saunders said.