Page 16 - Scene Magazine November 2023 47-11
P. 16

Local Interest
     Miles for Memories intentionally set out to develop a variety of programs in 2022 that would support the needs of youth. These programs would help area youth to understand what dementia is, reduce fears, and help them to learn how they can support loved ones. The goal was set but the pedagogy was a challenge. The solution became obvious the moment the Battle Creek Community Foundation decided to use puppets to bring their holiday celebration to life... yes puppets.
supports youth in middle school. Sweet Readers is for high school students. Elder Educators is for college students. Pairing Michigan State University pre-med students with the person living with a neurodegenerative condition,
The concepts that were developed
by Albion College students for a Miles for Memories coloring book became
the backdrop for crafting a puppet show script. The creativity of Clovis Bordeaux exploded into the puppet family now known as the Jones. The story then be- came a video that young children began to learn from, enjoy, embrace, and share. But what happened next was totally unexpected... adults learned too. Adults shared how much the puppets impact- ed them; tears fell at the first research update; the understanding they gained made their caregiving choices easier. The puppet videos are now shown at preschools and elementary schools
but also senior centers, adult care facilities, and even watched at home.
in a simple way. Adult children now have a new way to share dementia with their children. Aging adults learned a new way of communicating. Just as important, there is also a coloring book that supports the concepts from the first video. The characters are the puppets. There is also information in the back of the coloring book to help parents create opportunities for youth to spend mean- ingful time with the person living with dementia.
or their caregiver, has been valuable
for everyone involved in the program. College students as well as adults can get certified as a Dementia Capable Care specialist. Miles, the great brain, is help- ful for all ages.
There are three different puppet shows that are available on their You- Tube channel at Miles for Memories Michigan. The first introduces the Jones. The Jones family models the challenges that a family might face as well as how adults can discuss dementia with their children. The second video introduces the playground bullies and discusses the impact of name-calling and how youth can respond to it. The third introduces
a family pet, which everyone benefits from. Pets can be magical for the person impacted by dementia.
The Power of Puppets
The puppets allowed Miles for Memories to share difficult concepts
Additional youth programs are also successful. The Pen Pal program
Miles for Memories is a commu- nity project fund at the Battle Creek Community Foundation. To schedule
a visit from the puppets call (269) 979-1412. They will bring the coloring books and crayons as well. To learn more about Miles for Memories visit
Miles for Memories continues to cre- ate ways for all impacted by dementia to learn, to feel supported and understood. Puppets have proven to be a valuable way for all ages to do just that.
  This page is presented through the generosity
of the Battle Creek Community Foundation. (269) 962-2181
The Battle Creek Community Foundation Mission:
“We promote giving, build endowment, and provide leadership to improve quality of life.”
We invite you to explore our website and learn more about giving, volunteering, and our grantmaking at
                                          16 SCENE 4811 I CELEBRATIONS

   14   15   16   17   18