Friday, July 31, 2015

Quilts help bring the senses alive

More than 100 “touch quilts” crafted by area volunteers are making their way into hands across Rainy River District, helping to provide sensory stimulation to those with Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia.
Eleanor Barron, the local Alzheimer Society’s “First Link” and public education co-ordinator, presented 30 quilts to Rainycrest Long-term Care and five to La Verendrye Hospital here on Thursday.

Seven quilts then were given to the Rainy River Health Centre, and five to the Emo Health Centre, on Friday.
“As well, many quilts have been given to people with Alzheimer’s disease who are living in the community and are not yet in long-term care,” noted Barron.
“Any remaining quilts will be given to other communities that receive services from the Alzheimer Society of Kenora/Rainy River Districts where there is no ‘touch quilt’ program going on,” she added.
Barron said the touch quilts were made possible thanks to the hard work, skill, and generosity of quilters from Fort Frances, Emo, Off Lake, and Rainy River.
“Some of the people were involved in quilting guilds and others worked on their own,” she noted, adding Grade 7/8 students from Donald Young School in Emo each made a quilt after a presentation was done in their class about Alzheimer’s disease.
The materials all were donated.
Barron said the sensory stimulation “touch quilts” provide has been proven to:
•increase happiness, enjoyment, and relaxation;
•lessen sadness and fear;
•increase attentiveness to the environment;
•increase communication; and
•reduce incidents of reactive behaviours.
“The ‘touch quilt’ project in the district has provided an opportunity to increase community knowledge of brain health, Alzheimer’s disease, and the importance of early diagnosis,” Barron remarked.
In related news, tickets are now available for the Alzheimer Society’s “Forget Me Not” dinner slated for Saturday, Jan. 12 at La Place Rendez-Vous here.
Cocktails are at 6 p.m., with the dinner at 6:30.
The event also will include entertainment, and a prize auction.
Tickets, which cost $50 each (a $25 charitable tax receipt will be issued) or $400 for a table of eight, are available at the Rendez-Vous, Northwoods Gallery & Gifts, Dev-Lynne’s, the Emo Inn, and Cloverleaf.
They also are available by calling 1-800-682-0245 or visiting

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