Thursday, September 21, 2023 - World Alzheimer's Day
COMMENTS FROM ATTENDEES
Lauren Vlachos, Executive Director, Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center
"We have recognized that art therapy is a way to connect with folks who are having cognitive decline or other forms of dementia, so we have started a program titled The Art Expression Program. We provide them themes, we give them program materials, and they work with families in culminating different projects. At the end of the year we ask those individual artists to pick one of their creations.
So, a few years ago our organization was really just doing this in our office, and I was well aware of the Islip Arts Council, and I really wanted to elevate the program, so I reached out to them. They have been amazing, incredibly generous hosting us, providing support, and getting the word out about our organization and the programs that we serve.
Often there are frustrations or challenges being the caregiver of someone who has dementia or other cognitive decline. So, through art and then coming to celebrate their loved one is just another way to connect and sometimes forget about the disease, and then just enjoy time with your loved one."
Carol Hartmann, Director of Programs, Education and Training
"Today is a culmination of a one-year program that we worked with all of the different programs on Long Island. We work with assisted living facilities, day programs, nursing homes, and we as a group do our art for the year. Then the artists come here, they pick their favorite art that they want to hang and we put it up for them for display."
Angie Carpenter, Supervisor Town of Islip
"We're here today at the mall being hosted by the Islip Arts Council, who are opening up people's eyes and hearts, really, to what the Arts are all about and the incredible effect the Arts can have on a person, regardless of their level of abilities, if they have physical disabilities, and those now suffering with Alzheimer's or dementia, to show that it doesn't matter, to know it's inside of you. And, giving them that opportunity to express it is absolutely incredible."
Steve Flotteron, Suffolk County Legislator
"The creativity is amazing, so this is great therapy, all the smiling faces, and again this interaction is wonderful in keeping the mind healthy and active, which is so important."
Tishawri, Life Enrichment Director
"I'm so amazed at all of the artists here, just to see our artwork displayed, it just brings so much joy on how much hard work we did, and it's just amazing to see the residents really happy on just displaying their artwork."
Morales Family, Participating Artist
"We're very happy, he's a totally different person, and it has helped me a lot. He enjoys what we do every day, and every morning he gets up and he says, “Now, where are we going?”