ARTWORK created by Teesside care home residents has been turned into a dementia-friendly colouring book.
A large A3 sized tome of paintings, drawings, murals, and more was made from the work of residents at Mandale House Care Home, on Acklam Road, Thornaby, among other care homes across the North East.
The book has been widely distributed to care homes in the region to provide a dementia-friendly arty activity and is also available to purchase to raise funds for creative charity Equal Arts.
Each of the elderly artists who participated in the charity’s HenPower project sessions, which have been taking place for over three years, has a dedicated page with their photo and background information on their chosen piece.
Joan Cox, 83, is one of those featured in the book. During one of the art workshops she painted a goldfinch, spotted in the Mandale House Care Home garden, which has been reproduced in the book.
She said: “I’m finally famous. The book is absolutely fantastic. We made such wonderful pictures. How clever of the HenPower people to make it into a colouring book for us all to use.”
Over 40 copies of the book have been distributed among the residents at Mandale House Care Home. One of those to receive a copy was Kathleen Kidd, 92, who said: “Wow, look at all the pictures, isn’t it lovely.”
Sarah Robinson, activity coordinator at Mandale House Care Home, said: “I am proud as punch of the months of work done by Joan Cox, Edward Pelling, Brenda Turner, Joyce Gibson, Patricia Dobson, Brian Hodgson, Brian Buckle and their fellow residents.
“We have made wooden hens, bird houses, planters, artwork for the walls of our nature hide, and soft furnishings for inside the home.
“Residents have loved every aspect of the projects; it’s been a journey of discovery for us all. Who knew we have such artistic and creative people living at Mandale House? They’ve taught me a thing or two as well. The enthusiastic way they approached each new project was amazing.”
Jos Forester-Melville, HenPower programme manager, said: “We’ve been developing a dementia-friendly colouring book we’ve put together with residents’ artwork.
“It’s a lovely collection of images that have been based on residents work from sessions and exhibitions and has been curated by Equal Arts artists.
“It’s a really useful resource to have to engage residents on these cold and dark winter days.
“Our dementia-friendly colouring book brings a splash of colour and creativity with 41 thick paintable pages that can be torn out, kept or shown and shared with others.
“It would be a great Christmas gift and is a steppingstone to getting more people involved in a creative and meaningful activity.”
“Colour Me Creative” featuring Mandale House Care Home residents can be purchased for £7 from Equal Arts by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. All money raised will go towards future creative sessions with the elderly and vulnerable.