At the municipality of Copenhagen one wants to use new ways of working with older people, who at first sight appear to be difficult to reach. It is older people who, in different ways, have problems with moving around or expressing themselves.
They respond differently to the traditional ways of making contact, and require support and care. Furthermore, they need help to start an activity and to participate in it. Other people can find them confused, insecure and diffuse. It can be difficult for them, the older people, to enter into a relation with others, and they can seem indifferent and passive to what is taking place around them.
Art and culture as a way of contact
In the traditional ways of contact we make use of our capacity to think logically, to reason and to apply our knowledge. Whereas art and culture create a form of contact where one is together in the now, and one relates to the healthy part of the individual. Infirmities and a forgetful mind are something secondary. Fantasy, feelings and impressions take first place. In this art and culture present a platform for playing, excitement and eventfulness in an ordinary day, which for some older people can appear lonely and insurmountable.
Challenges for the personnel
The personnel have challenges of different kinds. The personnel need to practice putting aside the traditional forms of communication and the daily, usual routine. They have to establish a safe supporting framework wherein the older people can open and unfold themselves. Simultaneously, they, the personnel, have to be open to use the input which the old people give, and incorporate it in the art form.
The art forms which are used in the project are: storytelling and theater playing, dance, rhythm and painting.