The Memory Maker Project uses art (in every sense of the word) as a key to unlock existing memories and to create new memories with people who are living with memory loss in the 607 area code we fondly call the "Southern Tier" of upstate NY.
Once we learn to communicate with a person who has symptoms of memory loss, we can have rich, meaningful conversations that are mutually beneficial. One of our favorite questions to ask people when looking at a romantic piece of art is, “Have you ever been in love? What does it feel like?” Everyone says "yes!" to this question and goes on to explain in his or her own poetic way of what it feels like to fall in love. “It feels warm.” or “It feels like you are flying and closer to the ground than every before.” or “It feels like you’re going to throw up.”
Typically they don’t stop there.
Many people will then tell stories about falling in (and out) of love, ask us questions about our own love life, and then offer us unsolicited but wise advise on the matter. We both leave the conversation fulfilled—they feel as though they have relived falling in love and that they have offered advise to us. Now we have the romantic insight of hundreds of couples that have been married for more than 60 years!
This is the very essence of The Memory Maker Project: we create opportunities where everyone can have a successful, meaningful experience and develop relationships outside of the typical care-giver/ care-receiver schema. Maybe everyone doesn’t exactly remember that what they talked about, or with whom. But everyone leaves remembering that something great just happened and that they’d really like to do it again.
Isn't that what we all want to feel like at the end of the day?
Here's to sharing and making memories!
Christina and Kim
Christina Muscatello, Ed.M. Kim Evanoski, CMC LMSW MPA CDP
Co-Founder/ Program Coordinator Co-Founder/ Community Liaison
Contribute Checks to: The Memory Maker Project, 213 N. Tioga St #312 Ithaca NY 14851