Life Enrichment Coordinator for the Memory Care Program at Allerton House in Hingham, Jeanette Champagne, stands alongside resident artwork proudly on display in the community.
Thirty-eight original watercolor paintings are currently on display at Allerton House at Harbor Park for the enjoyment of residents, staff, family and friends. The artists are residents of the Hingham Allerton House Assisted Living Community’s Memory Care Neighborhood, which offers specialized care, support and opportunities for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or related memory disorders.
One such opportunity is the neighborhood’s Alternative Art Program. “The Alternative Art Program encourages residents to explore their artistic sides and learn new skills. It is designed to engage all of the participants in a positive and accepting environment in which the outcome is always successful,” says Jeanette Champagne, life enrichment coordinator at the Allerton House Memory Care Neighborhood.
The Alternative Art Program participants work with a variety of mediums using multiple techniques. They design and create painted silk scarves, hand-painted beaded jewelry, headbands and greeting cards in addition to landscape, still life and floral paintings. Champagne says, “The beauty of art is in its originality. All of the residents can start off with the same project, yet the end results are completely unique to each individual.”
The program was created by Jeanne Runewicz, an artist and activity assistant at another Welch Group community, Allerton House in Duxbury. According to Champagne the Alternative Art Program began when the Hingham Memory Care Neighborhood opened in 2013. Champagne and Runewicz meet each week with the resident artists, lending structure, guidance, assistance and support.
The program’s projects continue to evolve to accommodate the needs and interests of the residents, and are broken down into manageable steps to ensure success. “The feeling of accomplishment and pride that comes from creative endeavors is difficult to describe, but easy to see when a resident engages in and completes an art project,” says Champagne. “We have a lot of talented individuals here in the Allerton House Memory Care Neighborhood.”
The Memory Care Neighborhood features 16 rental apartments – 10 studios and three two-bedroom companion suites. The program follows the Alzheimer’s Association Habilitation Therapy Methods. For more information contact Carol Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org