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HomeMade Zines: Artists Respond to Lockdowns in Care Communities

October 22, 2020

TimeSlips believes that care for people living with dementia and support for those who care for them needs a cultural change. We envision a future where those who live with dementia -- whether they are at home or in a care facility -- are respected and can draw from a well of creative engagement that focuses on the creativity we all have within us at any moment, not on the past, which can be so hard to connect with for caregivers and those with dementia. One way in which TimeSlips aims to make this culture shift is by working with longterm and other care facilities to infuse creativity into every aspect of community member engagement.

In Wisconsin, TimeSlips has been working with staff at 25 nursing homes state-wide to support their development of "creative care" techniques. Through this training we work with key members of the nursing home staff and certify them in the TimeSlips methodology of engagement, provide an in-service video, and supplement with supporting materials for the broader staff. These materials also assist staff in activating the community’s network of volunteers, family members and others to support deepened and meaningful resident engagement.

At the beginning of the year, TimeSlips chose five regional artists to work with specific sites to devise a creative care celebration that would activate the community as a whole, and celebrate the resident’s creativity. Each artist had started planning detailed celebrations with their sites, engaging staff and seniors every step of the way. When word of the first SARS-CoV-2 lockdown hit, we knew it was only a matter of time before plans would need to be postponed or changed all together.

As the pandemic continued to spread, hitting nursing homes the hardest, we knew we couldn’t wait for a vaccine. We had to act. Our services were still needed, in part to aid the residents most impacted by increased social isolation, but with new restrictions in place and staff being overworked, we had to deliver our services in new ways. After some thought, all five artists engaged with Wisconsin care communities decided to work together to create a series of interactive zines (short, Do-It-Yourself magazines) for the 25 sites. The zines would be printed in house (safe!), and would provide engaging activities for elders, while limiting any additional work by staff.

Each artist represents a different artistic medium, but each managed to find innovative ways to translate their skills into the zine structure. They decided to use the overarching theme of “Home” and used each zine to explore different parts of the home including outdoor spaces, communal spaces, and personal spaces.

TimeSlips is thrilled to be able to share these zines with you now. Please feel free to print and use them as prompts for creative engagement with someone you care about. They are meant for elders but are great for any age!

HomeMade Zine: Outside My Window
HomeMade Zine: Meet Me Here
HomeMade Zine: Space For Me

We invite you to a webinar as a part of our Creative Care Fall Festival featuring these artists and their thoughtful, creative work during this difficult time. Learn from their experiences and be inspired by the ways they continue to provide positive activities for seniors in care settings from afar.The webinar will be on October 29, from 10-11am CST.

Click here to register.