The music memory box
Published 16 October 2012
University of Brighton graduate Chloe Meineck has created a 'memory box' which plays favourite music and contains familiar objects to help trigger memories among dementia sufferers.
Chloe took two years researching the positive effects of music for those with dementia before developing the box which is unique to each patient. She said: "Listening to music from certain periods of their lives can help prompt even their most inaccessible memories."
The box uses radio frequency identification tags, the same technology used in Oyster cards on London's tube network, which set off a favourite tune, recording or song as each familiar object in the box is handled.
Chloe can make boxes for individuals but is now branching out to make larger boxes for groups of residents in care homes.
Chloe graduated in design and craft from the University of Brighton's Faculty of Arts this summer. She said it was a "great course" which has helped her in her career. What was especially useful, she said, was a research and design competition run by Philippa Aldrich, a trustee of the University of Brighton Foundation, who founded The Future Perfect Company which champions inclusive designs for an ageing population. Chloe said: "This really helped me decide that I wanted to help people through my work."
Chloe is setting up her own company that focuses on how using interaction with objects can have a therapeutic or educational outcome. She is hoping to receive funding for more research and design work: "I want to continue making bespoke music memory boxes and also broaden the process out and run workshops with large groups of people in homes, making communal music memory boxes."
She wants to continue involving the elderly in her designs: "I am interested in co-designing with the older population, using technology, and finding out where interventions can be designed and made to help them."
For more information email Chloe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Contact: Marketing and Communications, University of Brighton, 01273 643022