At Pictures to Share I have spent the last 10 years researching what pictures and books people with mid to later stage dementia can enjoy and why.
When I started on this path in 2004 it seemed obvious to me that people with dementia had specific needs with regard to images and books – but I didn’t know what those needs were or how to provide for them. It was completely uncharted territory.
And here we are, 10 years and tens of thousands of books later, and we’ve learned a great deal.
Over the last 10 years, our work has benefitted hundreds of thousands of people and we’ve laughed and cried with our customers over the tribulations and torment that is the world of 21st century dementia care in the UK.
When I started working in visual imagery and dementia, I hoped that if it proved to be successful, our ideas would be copied. As a social enterprise we want to improve the lives of as many people as possible through the use of beautiful imagery – so the more people benefitting from our experience, the better.
It’s true that there are now many more products on the market that use visual imagery in an effort to engage people with dementia. The designers of these products however, rarely seem to consider the very different roles that pictures can play in our modern society, or understand the very special needs of those with mid to later stage dementia.
In an effort to try and start a debate about this issue I felt it necessary to write a book clearly explaining the issues as we see them in an easy but informative way. Because we felt that many people simply wouldn’t be able or prepared to pay a commercial rate for the book, we decided that the only way to try and make sure as many people as possible would read it, was to give it away!
Click here to purchase a copy for £6.00 including P & P.
Helen Bate is a visual communication specialist. Originally a qualified Architect, she also has 1st class degree and Masters degree in Illustration. She is a published children’s illustrator and has spent the last 10 years helping those with dementia through the work of Pictures to Share C.I.C