11 November 2011
More than 200 people, most of them men with dementia or memory problems, will take part in a mass football reminiscence event on Thursday, November 17, hosted by Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), the Scottish Football Museum and Memories F.C. partner organisations.
The elderly fans will be taken on a lively journey back to the past, using old photographs and stories to recall the glory days of Scottish football from the 1950s, 60s and 70s, presented by Falkirk FC historian Michael White.
Following the session in Hampden auditorium, the men will enjoy smaller, informal chats about football over a cup of tea, again using photos as stimuli for conversation and memories about the beautiful game.
This is the biggest football reminiscence event to have taken place in Scotland. Smaller ones have been held at clubs across the country. Speaking after one such workshop, the wife of one of the men involved in the GCU study said: “I drive here with this sad person with dementia and I take home my husband.”
GCU Memories FC researcher Andrew Lowndes said: “We already know that football based reminiscence has the potential to contribute to improving the wellbeing of men with dementia by enhancing their self-confidence, self-expression, social engagement and sense of enjoyment.
“We have had a fantastic response from members of the community who have been in touch saying how excited they are about attending the Memories FC event at Hampden.”
Studies by the Scottish Football Reminiscence Partnership (Glasgow Caledonian University, Scottish Football Museum, European Former Players Association (EFPA), Alzheimer Scotland, St Louis University USA, University of the West of Scotland ) has already established that showing football memorabilia to men with dementia can have amazing results.
And the project is already having an impact across the Atlantic - St. Louis University in Missouri were so impressed with GCU’s early findings that they have developed their own baseball reminiscence league.
Project leader, Professor Debbie Tolson, of GCU, said: “We are trying to build knowledge through creative ways for young and old to see how they can make a difference to the lives of those with dementia, particularly to offset loneliness. There is very little provided specifically for men with dementia and this is a welcome and positive innovation.”
For further information, please contact:
Roisin Eadie, Press Officer, on 0141 331 8614 /07824 537 598
A grant of £75,000 from the Scottish Funding Council and the Arts and Humanities Research Council is helping people benefit from this research as part of a new Scotland-wide programme to spread knowledge and innovation in health, the environment, arts and humanities.
One of the UK's most dynamic universities, Glasgow Caledonian offers a modern, cosmopolitan environment for learning, teaching and applied research. The university’s mission is to provide a high quality, accessible, inclusive and flexible learning and teaching environment enhanced by curiosity driven research. It applies its knowledge and skills for the social and economic benefits of the communities it serves in Scotland and around the world.