There is a new ‘healing environment ‘ at Kings. Over the past year Emma Ouldred, Dementia Nurse Specialist at Kings has been working with a dedicated project team to create a sensory room in this ward. The room will provide a relaxing environment for patients with dementia. Using sights and sounds, combined with a redesign of the entire ward, it will help prevent patients from becoming agitated or distressed during their stay at Kings.
Dementia is more common in people aged 65 and over, although it can affect younger people too. Symptoms include loss of memory, judgement and even the ability to speak. It affects not only the patient but also loved ones, who in their role as carers can see their relationship with their partner or relative change immeasurably.
The Friends of Kings charity has agreed to donate significant funds from a legacy from the estate of the late Rosa Davis; a long-serving member of the Dulwich Society who had a keen interest in gardens, trees and wildlife, towards transforming the ward environment. Further contributions will be made from the Kings Fund and the Kings Trust. There will be better signage, lighting and seating and artwork is being developed by patients, visitors and staff in collaboration with Dulwich Picture Gallery.
Dulwich Picture Gallery’s successful Urban Youth Programme has unveiled Future Couture, an original Fashion Programme. Following creative workshops over the summer, the programme’s young participants modelled their creations in and around the Gallery in October in a professional fashion shoot. It followed the successful project Art Slam, a partnership between the Gallery and the youth organisation SE1 United last year.
The Gallery’s Urban Youth Programme brought young people to the Gallery to seek fashion inspiration through the paintings. A guided tour focussed on the meaning of clothes in the permanent collection, and how current designers such as Vivienne Westwood and John Galliano reinterpret the past in their own contemporary collections. Choosing Gallery paintimgs for inspiration, participants designed their own creations to re-work, transform and re-imaging clothing the Gallery’s collection of Old Masters.
Fashion workshops were overseen by Carol Wright, a professional clothes designer working in the film industry who has had recent commissions by Johnny Depp and Jude Law. With her expertise young people learned how to develop an idea and transform it into original clothing – breathing new life into Old Masters to create imaginative fashion for today. Many are keen to pursue a career in fashion and receiving personal tuition from Carol was a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Unfortunately the photo shoot for the project had to be cancelled due to the riots taking place in London and the strict curfews imposed on the areas where the participants live. The Gallery says that this sadly highlights the need for more Urban Youth Programmes which seek to directly work with disaffected young people who otherwise might become part of gang culture by offering an alternative, brighter and better future.