A compelling play about a mother and daughter’s relationship as dementia takes a hold will be brought to life at this Saturday’s HealthFest extravaganza.
Packed with humour and tenderness, Connie’s Colander is just one of the events taking place at the festival, a free family event which focuses on ‘Living Well Through Activity’.
It takes place at the Warneford Hospital site in Headington, from 11am until 3pm – as part of Oxford Open Doors weekend.
Organised by Oxford Health, the festival is in its second year and has gained wide support from a host of community and charitably organisations in the county.
There’ll be taster sessions in art, yoga, bellydancing, and mindfulness as well as music and dance performances for all ages and chances to find out more about community physical and mental health services and how you can boost your wellbeing.
Community involvement lead Julie Pink said: “It’s our opportunity to show everyone that living well encompasses both physical and mental health activity as well as the way in which we nourish our bodies and brains with food, knowledge and community.”
Taking centre stage at the PEACE centre at the Warneford site at 1.30pm, is Connie’s Colander a 50-minute play from the Human Story Theatre about dementia.
Written by Gaye Poole, who plays retired domestic science teacher Connie, the show centres on the relationship between her and daughter Emily who is enjoying hosting her first TV cookery show Connie’s Colander, bringing her mother’s recipes onscreen and up to date.
With humour, tenderness and sensitivity, this play – which has been on a national tour – traces the evolving relationship throughout their lives and the impact of Connie’s Alzheimer’s. Can their relationship, and the TV show, survive?
After the play there will be a Q&A session for 20 minutes during which audience members can quiz the actors and a dementia specialist.
It’s being staged to help mark World Alzheimer’s Month and raise awareness of the condition which is expected to effect one million people in the UK by 2025.
Oxford Health runs a range of special services for people who have dementia and memory concerns as well as supporting their families and carers.
HealthFest takes place on Saturday, September 14 from 11am to 3pm. Entry is free. There is no car parking on site and it is hoped visitors will take the opportunity to walk to the site off Warneford Lane or cycle.
Find out more about Oxford Health’s dementia services https://www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/memory-concerns-and-dementia/your-services/