“Laughter is the best medicine, and we have plenty of that here,” said Carol Lucas, a registered nurse who works with the weekly adult respite care group that meets at the First Baptist Church of Boca Grande.
As she spoke, the sound of laughter pealed through the room. A beach ball, kicked by a program member, bounced across the room towards her.
Art projects, board games, and bingo are just a few of the activities that the group participates in each week, along with the popular multi-person game of “beach ball catch.”
The program, sponsored by the Boca Grande Health Clinic, is as much about letting those with memory loss interact with their peers as it is about giving caretakers a break.
This week the members voted by closed ballot on their group name. The Forget-Me-Nots meet every Tuesday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. under the guidance of Evelyn Darna and Lucas.
Pam Hannah led this week’s art project, a three-dimensional paper sunflower. The group tore and curled bright paper petals and glued them to a blue backing, then filled the center with black beans.
The art projects are part of the Arts and Humanities Council of Charlotte County’s art therapy program to help those who suffer from memory loss express themselves artistically.
There are around eight members right now, and room for plenty more. The program costs $49 per session to cover lunch, snacks, and supplies, but the fee is subject to ability to pay.
“We don’t want anyone to feel like they can’t participate because of cost,” explained Lucas.
The program can always use volunteers; especially people to give presentations or classes and to lead discussions.
If you have a particular talent or collection to share, have knowledge of a topic that you would enjoy discussing, or you know someone who might be interested in joining the program, contact Evelyn Darna at 964-4108, Carol Lucas, RN, at (941) 255-9192, or the Boca Grande Health Clinic at 964-2276.
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