Reminiscence Network East - Museums Association

Reminiscence Network East

A regional approach to working with people with dementia
Mark Curteis
In 2010, Share Museums East ran a conference, Reminiscence in the Region, at the Imperial War Museum Duxford. Participants represented a range of service providers including museums, libraries, archives, and health and arts organisations.    

At the end of the day participants were asked to consider a way forward. The suggestion that received the most support was for a regional reminiscence network to enable people to continue to meet, network and share information. From this the Reminiscence Network East was born.

The network’s objectives are:

  • To develop partnerships across sectors.
  • To share good practice and information.
  • To work to 'embed' reminiscence both in museums and in social care.
  • To provide training opportunities.
  • To provide a platform for partnership working both to deliver projects and gain funding.

The network is a cooperative relationship between museums, healthcare workers and the arts. It is coordinated by committee of committed individuals representing these three sectors.

The network has developed rapidly and now has nearly 300 members. It is formally constituted with its own bank account. The majority of funding is provided by Share but other sources of funding are actively sought.

In order to achieve its objectives the network organises three annual workshops and a biannual conference. An e-newsletter is sent out to all members to promote activities and publicise projects, while a recently established blog further facilitates networking.

The workshops function as hands-on training opportunities and also an opportunity for members to share experiences and ideas. Workshops in recent years have included animation, rag-rug making, developing basic memory boxes, using memories to create song and dance, poetry and life story books. Our last conference focussed on reminiscence and wellbeing.

The network is free to join and all its activities are free.

Mark Curteis is the chairman of the Reminiscence Network East

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