As seniors living in nursing homes are largely confined to their rooms due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Friendly Home is providing a unique opportunity for families to connect with their loved ones through music. Neurologic Music Therapist Sam Snyder, explains, “Since our residents’ families cannot come to visit, all of us in the Life Enrichment and Social Work departments have been working hard to help bridge those familial and social connections in every meaningful way we can. Guitar Grams are a way to help families stay involved in their loved ones’ lives while bringing personalized live music and messages of love right to their doors.”
Families can send songs and dedications to residents via email. Sam will then deliver the gift of music with a doorway visit to the resident’s room. He also plays the requested songs as he strolls through the halls of the Friendly Home, and as part of his weekly Piano Lounge, which is broadcast to residents on the Friendly Home’s internal television channel.
“The Guitar Grams that Sam plays for the residents light up their days and puts a smile on their faces. It connects them with their past by playing songs they have loved through the years, and hopefully reminds them of their family,” says Mary Blind, daughter of a Friendly Home resident. The family has sent their mother a few Guitar Grams featuring the tunes of one her favorite singers, Frank Sinatra.
The reactions of residents is heartwarming as they sing along, clap, and – most importantly – know that their families are sending lots of love their way.
See Sam delivering a Guitar Gram here! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKS6NysP580
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