The Memory Bank project was thought up and established by the Yorkshire Film Archive (YFA), who worked closely with a group of healthcare professionals and carers during the development of the project.
The idea is that these carefully selected old films will help the viewer to remember the past by triggering familiar memories of days gone by.
Director of the Yorkshire Film Archive Sue Howard explained that all of the memories are still there, they just need something to trigger them.
Most of the movies selected were taken in and around Yorkshire between the forties and seventies, and have been kept at the YFA ever since.
The clips are all around the six minute long mark, and they feature subjects such as holidays, school, shopping trips and sport from the era – all activities which the viewers will have taken part in during their youth.
All of the film clips are accompanied by a useful resource pack featuring notes and some tips on potential discussion points that can be brought up during the film.
Those involved in organising the study reported that the films sparked conversations about all sorts of topics from fashion faux pas knitted swimsuits through to free milk at school.
Speaking of the project, social gerontologist Professor Dianne Wilcocks said: “Memory Bank is about opening up our collections to a huge range of old people, many of whom face a number of age-related challenges, and who often have very few opportunities to see and enjoy films such as these.
“Reminiscence therapy and memory work play an invaluable role in improving a sense of personal identity and well being, and stimulating communication and sociability.” She said.
Living with dementia is extremely difficult from both the sufferer and their family, and whilst there is no cure, there are steps that can be taken to slow its progression. A counsellor specialising in this area will not only help sufferers and their loved ones to contemplate and understand what is happening to them and how best to deal with it, but may also have some useful coping strategies.
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