Photo credit: Alicia Clarke
To support Dementia Awareness week, we have been talking to our lovely Dance for Dementia volunteers and tutor assistants about what it is like being part of the Dance for Dementia programme here at DanceEast. Here is a chance to hear from one of our Tutor Assistants about the class:
1. Why did you become a tutor assistant for dance for dementia?
I have family member who suffers from dementia as well and I think it is important for them and their carers to go out and meet other people with the same conditions as well. Apart from that, I have a huge interest in the area of dance and health. I think dance and movement, combined with other intervention, can be an excellent way of helping people with various health conditions. Being in this programme allows me to use my personal experience and to care for other people, it always put a smile on my face when I can brighten up other people’s life a bit!
2. What is the most rewarding part of tutor assistant?
Most rewarding part of my experience would be seeing the participants, as well as the carers enjoying themselves. It is very fulfilling to see that the carers are able to relax and not worry about the person that they are cared for as they know that they will be looked after in the sessions.
3. What does a typical session mean for a tutor assistant?
As a tutor assistant, my main role is to facilitate the running of the sessions, which include ensuring the smooth running of the sessions, the safety of the participants and supporting individuals on a 1:1 basis. For a typical session, I would arrive 45 minutes before the start and to help the volunteers to set up the studios as well as refreshments. When the participants arrive, we will sit down and have a chat about anything and everything! In the sessions, I sometimes help certain participants that need extra support and join in with the dancing. In the end, we would have another drink before we pack everything up and have a little debrief of the sessions.
4. Do you volunteer at any other organisation?
I also tutor assist for other dance classes at DanceEast. I mainly work with children and adults with additional needs in their weekly sessions, and I also occasionally volunteer for the Dance for Parkinson’s classes here as well.
Feeling inspired? For more information about being a tutor assistant or volunteer please email Lizzie Croucher firstname.lastname@example.org.