Welsh heritage will play a central role in House of Memories Cymru, a new dementia-focused museum initiative that launched this week at the Senedd in Cardiff.
Part of the award-winning House of Memories initiative created by National Museums Liverpool (NML), the bilingual programme will see 14 museum partners across Wales working with families and care-givers to support people living with dementia.
Created in partnership with NML and the Welsh government, the programme includes a dual-language app, My House of Memories, as well as a range of training, workshops and activities.
The participating museums have worked together to create the app, which is populated with digital objects chosen for their significance to Welsh heritage as well as their potential to stimulate memories and conversation.
The programme uses prompts to connect elders to traditions and events that may spark memories from the past.
Through the app package, users can search through a live museum of Welsh items and personalise their experience to include memories that are particularly strong for them.
Featuring a mix of audio, video and still images, the app covers key sections including Wales during the war, lifestyles of Welsh communities, industry, memories of childhood, technology, transport and more.
Objects range from common family items found around homes to those linked to major events such as the 1984 Miners’ Strike.
“I’m delighted that we’ve been able to support House of Memories Cymru which celebrates Welsh culture and the invaluable role Welsh museums play in supporting older people and those living with dementia,” said Wales's arts minister, Dawn Bowden.
“Bilingual resources like House of Memories Cymru are important as it enables our communities in Wales and beyond to engage with our heritage in the language of their choosing across the globe. They will be able to connect with their community even if they are hundreds of miles away.”
“We are thrilled to launch House of Memories Cymru and add a bespoke Welsh package to our international House of Memories programme,” said Carol Rogers, director of the House of Memories programme at NML.
“The country of Wales has a rich and diverse cultural heritage that has had a huge influence on Liverpool, and it is a privilege to work in partnership with museum colleagues across Wales to support the Welsh dementia community.”
House of Memories Cymru will now roll out across Wales with training and workshops around the country. The first workshop takes place in Swansea on 25 October.
- Aura Leisure and Libraries
- Ceredigion Museum
- Conwy Culture Centre
- Llŷn Maritime Museum
- Monlife Heritage Museums
- Museum of Cardiff
- National Museum Wales
- Oriel Môn Museum
- Penmaenmawr Museum
- Radnorshire Museum
- Royal Welch Fusiliers Museum
- Swansea Museum Services
- Winding House
- Y Gaer Museum