The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) has received a National Dementia Friendly Award for its work with dementia patients. It has won the category for ‘Dementia Friendly Organisation of the Year – Small and Medium’.
Organised by the Alzheimer’s Society each year, the awards highlight the achievements of individuals, organisations and schemes that have worked with people suffering from dementia in England and Wales. A panel selected the winners after members of the public made their nominations in the autumn.
The BSO, whose ‘Boost’ scheme focuses on improving the wellbeing of listeners through music, was nominated in the 2016 Awards, and this year came out on top.
BSO initiatives that use music to improve the health and wellbeing of its audiences have focused particularly on dementia sufferers. The BSO’s ‘Music for a While’ scheme delivers workshops and recitals to dementia patients in wards across four regional hospitals. A series of ‘Cake Concerts’ have provided classical music to patients and families in a relaxed setting in which the audience eats cake during an informal performance.
‘We could not be more proud and honoured… For us the power of music is all-encompassing, even if you have lost the ability to communicate in some way. Music is an absolute combined communication force,’ said Dougie Scarfe, Chief Executive of the BSO.
Further details of the awards and winners can be found here.