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Carlingwark House leading national campaign to introduce the Playlist for Life

Carlingwark House is leading a major national campaign to introduce the Playlist for Life, a specialist music therapy that supports people living with dementia, to care homes across Scotland. The home features in a special video that showcases the impact of Playlist for Life by the Care Inspectorate, the regulator for care services in Scotland. The video has recently been launched and shared with care homes across the nation.

Carlingwark House playlist for lifePlaylist for Life is a unique approach that sees people who live with dementia enjoy person-centred playlists, made up of songs that represent the soundtrack of their life. This personally meaningful music enables people who live with dementia to reconnect with their treasured memories – helping to improve in their health, happiness and wellbeing.

Carlingwark House supports 30 older people, many of whom live with dementia. The home has championed using Playlist for Life, after becoming one of the first adopters of the therapy in early 2014. It has seen a significant impact on the people we support who have been using personal playlists – seeing music bring back treasured memories and create happiness.

The home has been celebrated for its exceptional use of Playlist for Life. Carlingwark’s Team Leader, Kelly Henderson, who has led this project in the home, was last year recognised with accolades at the 3rd Sector Care Awards and National Care Awards. The home has also featured at The Gathering conference and the Scottish Dementia Congress, helping others in the care sector learn from their music video approaches.

The video helps care providers understand how to use Playlist for Life and hear from carers at Carlingwark, and families, on the benefits this brings. It has been praised by many organisations in the Scottish social care sector.

Kelly says: “Playlist for Life connects the people we support with important events in their lives, and they get so much enjoyment from listening to their favourite songs. It allows them to improve their relationship with families and loved ones, as they share special moments together. It is an honour for us to be able to help many more care homes benefit from an approach that has helped us to deliver life-changing care.”

Heather Edwards, the Care Inspectorate’s dementia consultant, said: “Playlist for Life is such a great way to make that connection with a person living with dementia where everyday communication may be limited.”

Heather added: “Staff watching the film will be able to get an awareness of the how to use Playlist and where to get training and support to bring this into their care homes, day centres or use with people living in their own homes. The more care staff know about a person the better they can support them to live well and keep those connections to friends and family as well as their own sense of who they are.”

TV personality Sally Magnusson, who is the Chair and founder of Playlist for Life, visited Carlingwark last year to see their use of the approach. Speaking at the launch of the video, she said: “We are absolutely delighted that the Care Inspectorate is backing Playlist for Life. We offer support and training to care homes so they can reach an individual and bring them closer to staff and family members through their unique playlist. We know it changes lives. We are excited that the Care Inspectorate wants all care homes in Scotland to be aware of its power.”

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