Memories Matter: Remembering Through Objects for People with Dementia

A Reminiscence volunteer dressed in 1950s clothing

Touch. Smell. Remember. Connect. Skilled volunteers at Birmingham Back to Backs are using its evocative setting to spark the sharing of memories and stories among people with Dementia.

On the second Monday of each month, one of our historic rooms is brought to life with a real coal fire, lamplight, and dozens of handling objects which are all used as a catalyst for the sharing of precious memories.

The objects used cover a variety of themes, including holidays, celebrations, music, and food and cookery, and each Monday session has a different theme.

Visitors are also treated to a relaxed introduction to the history and stories of the houses and their shared courtyard.

Feedback from people who have visited in this way has shown that sharing memories like this has been a positive experience for people living with mild Dementia, whose stories and recollections are at the heart of these social gatherings.

" My mother spoke about the reminiscence visit all day and the next. It really sparked memories that carried on after the group. I am so pleased that this has given my mother the confidence to now think about accepting day centre or lunch club."
- Son of visitor, Barbara, who took part in a Reminiscence workshop

Dementia-friendly visits to the Back to Backs are run by trained volunteers and are currently offered free of charge.

Sessions are not currently available for booking as the Back to Backs are closed at present. Please look here for booking information once the property has reopened.

Please note that our NHS partners have advised that these experiences are suitable for people with mild Dementia, and that each visitor must bring a companion with them.