Sing-a-long brings joy to Lai­d­ley

Gatton Star - - NEWS - Me­lanie Keyte me­lanie.keyte@gat­ton­star.com.au

IT’S usu­ally quiet at Tabeel Lutheran Home on Thurs­day morn­ings, but last week, the halls rang with the songs of yes­ter­year.

Lai­d­ley sis­ters Gemma and Shaye Har­ri­son had de­cided to bring a lit­tle mu­si­cal joy into the res­i­dents’ lives and asked along their mu­sic ther­a­pist Rob Mc­grigor to put on a spe­cial all-in­clu­sive ses­sion.

De­spite the girls’ rare ge­netic con­di­tion which has left them with a va­ri­ety of health dif­fi­cul­ties, they reg­u­larly vol­un­teer at the re­tire­ment home and thanks to in­creased fund­ing through the NDIS, last week was the first time they could share their favourite ther­apy with their Tabeel friends.

Mr Mc­grigor said mu­sic ther­apy was help­ful in con­nect­ing peo­ple to their mem­o­ries and to each other.

“I’ve been work­ing with Shaye and Gemma help­ing them with a bet­ter qual­ity of life and with ex­pres­sion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion,” he said.

“That en­joy­ment of daily liv­ing is rel­e­vant to older res­i­dents, plus other ben­e­fits.

“With de­men­tia, the pa­tient loses their short-term mem­ory but of­ten keeps their long-term mem­ory, par­tic­u­larly from their years as young adults, so we like to take them back to that part of their lives through song.”

Shaye and Gemma’s mum San­dra said the girls had been wait­ing for the op­por­tu­nity to sing with their friends, and had per­son­ally in­vited guests from the com­mu­nity to join them, in­clud­ing Jim Mcdon­ald.

“Like any set of sib­lings, they can get bored at home and bicker, so it’s good for them to get out and even bet­ter when they can give back to the com­mu­nity,” she said.

See the video on our web­site.

PHOTO: ME­LANIE KEYTE

POWER OF MU­SIC: Rob Mc­grigor rocked out with Gemma and Shaye, while Jim Mcdon­ald, San­dra Har­ri­son and Kayla Har­ri­son joined in with per­cus­sion.

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