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Thursday, January 14, 2010

This message was sent out today in the hospital's All-Staff Info Mail...

Reminiscence (Rummage) Boxes

We would like to create a stock of reminiscence boxes (also known as rummage boxes) for older patients to aid memory or act as talking points and to bring comfort by seeing the familiar. We would propose that the Barry Building would have two or three and then the other divisions one each. Patients with disorientation often find these boxes interesting and previously unsettled patients can take great interest in the contents.

We are looking for items to fill the boxes such as playing cards, photos from the 20th century which we will scan and laminate, board games especially dominoes, and items that might prompt discussion such as old fashioned pegs, dolls in good condition (research has proven that many disorientated people find holding a doll comforting) or anything that would remind someone of the past. We would welcome any suggestions and loads of donations!

How sweet is that. Instead of pumping distressed pensioners full of tranquilisers, we're going to let them rummage through a box of old knick-knacks. I honestly think that's brilliant. Just the fact that we're trying to come up with new ways to comfort elderly patients is really quite lovely. It's what you might call thinking outside the rummage box.

Sadly I don't have any old-fashioned pegs, and the only dominoes I've got are old pizza boxes, but I do have a lot of photos from the 20th century. I might donate some shots of my 21st birthday party. I love the idea anyway. When I'm old and confused (well, older and even more confused), there's nothing I'd like more than to rummage through a box of iPhones and Wiis to remind me of the good old days.