Evaluation of the Veder method: the use of theatre in psychogeriatric care (WC2009-021)

Evaluation of the Veder method: the use of theatre in psychogeriatric care

Background

Starting date: 01/05/2009

Evaluation of the Veder Method: theatre as a communication method in psychogeriatric care

In the Netherlands live over 235.000 people with dementia, and about 30 percent of these people live in care or nursing homes. Dementia is characterized by memory deficits, problems with language (aphasia), recognition (agnosia), and acting (apraxia) as well as problems with executive functions. Besides this, behavioral and mood disturbances often occur, such as agitation, depression, anxiety and psychoses. A recent by Theater Veder developed emotion oriented method is the Veder Method, an imagination method that has the objective to make contact with people with (amongst others) memory deficits by using theatrical stimuli.

When offered as a group activity on nursing home wards, this activity is called a ‘living room theatre activity’. During a ‘living room theatre activity, costumes, props and recognizable characters are used to create a stage set.  Theatrical stimuli like songs and poetry are used in combination with elements from successful communication methods in psychogeriatric care, for example reminiscence, Validation and NeuroLinguistic Programming.

This innovative method intents to give professional caregivers tools to better communicate with people with dementia. The objective is to establish reciprocity in communication, in order to advance and strengthen wellbeing, identity and self-esteem of people with dementia.