Free Movement, Music and Memories sessions in Kenilworth for older people with memory issues and their loved ones and wellbeing arts activities for Refugees in partnership with Warwickshire Libraries and Compassionate Kenilworth.

Arts Uplift brought a brand new intergenerational FREE arts project to Kenilworth in July 2023 to February 2024 thanks to funding from Comic Relief, Warwick District Council and Kenilworth Town Council.

First to get going was the older people’s Movement to Music sessions which involved simple stretching exercises to catchy well known songs and music, gently guided by experienced dancer Kath Kimber-McTiffen, with plenty of time for tea and chat.  Participants did not need a diagnosis to take part, and those with limited mobility remained seated if they preferred.  

“Kath is brilliant. She chose a great range of songs and made us feel so welcome. Before we knew it we were all joining in. It was great fun.” Participant

“They enjoy the exercise especially as its dance, so it doesn’t feel like exercise, they like the music, being together and being able to connect with each other over the tea break. I hear lots of sharing of things that might help / support / other groups etc.” dance artist, Kath

Dates and times: Fridays from 11.00am – 12.30pm

Place: Kenilworth Library, 11 Smalley Place, Kenilworth CV8 1QG

As well as being a lot of fun, participation in the arts can support mental well-being, improve brain function and physical coordination, as well as being a great way to make friends. 

Refugee group 

We worked with refugee families and young adults from Kenilworth on a visual arts and crafts project with Sioda from Earthbound at the Kenilworth Centre using a variety of mediums such as painting, collage and light.

“My observations are that for the participants (adult women in particular) this has been their only social event in the week. It’s a time when they can be out of their usual environment at the hotel and feel part of something. There is always plenty of chatter and smiles and they do really get so much out of meeting weekly. For some, painting and doing crafts is new to them and those who have been there from the start have grown in confidence and happiness. Some of the women are here alone without family and often stay in their room at the hotel. This has given them a social life and I would say some hope for their future life here in Kenilworth or elsewhere in the Uk. It’s the same for the young people, a chance to go somewhere else out of school and out of the hotel to feel part of a community.” visual artist, Sioda

“It’s very important for us because it reduces our stress and forget about our stress. It teaches us how to paint about the environment and to play with each other. It makes me happy.” participant

The older people and refugees as well as doing their own workshops exchanged artwork and photos of themselves and explored the theme of Celebrations. They also met in person and shared their exhibition and also participated in dance and movement over some refreshments. They shared stories about their lives. It was a wonderful occasion.

Watch the documentary film by Earth Bound HERE

 

 

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