Scottish Ballet was awarded £149,772 in August 2017, to run until July 2020.
Scottish Ballet applied for funding so that they could set up a programme of dementia friendly dance-based activities for people living with dementia, their carers and families across Scotland. These are called ‘Time To Dance’.
Central to the programme is weekly dementia friendly intergenerational dance classes, designed to be fun, accessible and inclusive. People with dementia and carers who participate in these classes are also invited to attend performances, visit rehearsals and meet the dancers themselves.
Activities take place in Glasgow, where Scottish Ballet is based, but they also take activities to cities where they tour, such as Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness. Dance professionals and Scottish Ballet staff have been given dementia-specific training, so that further activities can be offered to those who are unable to participate fully in the programme, such as those living in care homes.
By developing communication, expression, coordination, balance, creativity and social interaction, dancing engages the brain and improves quality of life.
Scottish Ballet have seen great success with this project - people living with dementia and those who care for them are more actively engaged in something that they enjoy and that improves general well being and health. They also act as an exemplar for other dance and theatre companies to become dementia friendly, while also raising awareness about what people living with dementia can achieve.
Read our Dementia Friendly Communities Reports and Toolkit by searching for them on our publications page.