Watercrest Senior Living Group and Central Florida Community Arts’ Musical Minds Choir Sparks Memories and Joy Through Song

VERO BEACH, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#watercrestlakenona–Hundreds of Orlando area seniors, families and community organizations
are rejoicing over the extraordinary impact of the Musical Minds Choir,
the first Florida-based community-wide performance group designed for
individuals experiencing early memory loss, dementia and Alzheimer’s. Watercrest
Senior Living Group
, owner and operator of Watercrest of Lake Nona
Assisted Living and Memory Care Community, partnered with Central
Florida Community Arts
in establishing the Musical Minds Choir in
the fall of 2015 and the results are extraordinary.


Since its inception, dozens of choir members and caregivers have
gathered weekly from all over Orlando and beyond for a musical journey
through the decades, singing along to the tunes of their youth, sparking
memories and enlivening their senses through song.

As part of the Watercrest Common Unity Initiative, Chris
Shepherd
, Vice President of Creative Program Development for
Watercrest Senior Living Group, was compelled to serve local individuals
living with early stage Alzheimer’s and dementia-related diseases by
expanding Watercrest’s music therapy program.

Shepherd approached Josh
Vickery
, Founder and Executive Director of Central Florida Community
Arts (CFCArts), a non-profit musical arts organization with a mission to
serve and enrich our community’s quality of life through the arts. Since
2011, CFCArts has exploded in popularity and widespread community
involvement, impacting thousands of individuals through their expansive
music and art programs, all with a mission to give back.

With a common vision to serve, Watercrest and CFCArts established the
Musical Minds Choir in partnership with the Brain Fitness Club of Winter
Park, the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Resource Center, the Alzheimer’s
Association of Central and North Florida, and hospice care provider,
Vitas. Numerous senior living and health-related organizations have
since joined through sponsorship and program involvement, attracting
widespread media attention and requests for choir performances at local
events.

“Musical Minds is the first program uniting Central Florida non-profits
focused on dementia. As members enter rehearsals each week, it’s easy to
identify individuals with dementia from their care partners, but once
the music starts, dementia disappears and the sounds of life, laughter,
love and music fill the air,” explains Chris
Shepherd
, VP of Creative Program Development for Watercrest Senior
Living Group. “Musical Minds has evolved into a support group for those
affected by dementia, but the focus is not on dementia, it is a
celebration of music and life!”

The widespread impact of the Musical Minds Choir has solidified
Watercrest as a leader and change agent in the movement to support
research and care for individuals experiencing early memory-loss,
Alzheimer’s and dementia-related diseases. Research shows music is
stored in a part of the brain last affected by Alzheimer’s disease and
the therapeutic experience of making music or simply listening to it can
stimulate the brain and promote brain health.

As the developer and operator of assisted living and memory care
communities, Watercrest
Senior Living Group
advocates the benefits of music on the brain
through implementation of the Music & Memory program in all of their
communities, such as Watercrest
of Lake Nona Assisted Living and Memory Care Community
in Orlando,
FL.

“The unification of senior living and healthcare organizations with our
talented partners at Central Florida Community Arts has established a
platform for our Musical Minds Choir to uniquely benefit individuals
living with Alzheimer’s and dementia-related diseases on a much broader
scale than we have ever experienced,” says Marc
Vorkapich
, Principal and CEO of Watercrest Senior Living Group. “Our
Watercrest team continues to break down the barriers of standard memory
care and deliver diverse, enriching life opportunities for our memory
care residents and local communities.”

The Watercrest
comprehensive memory care program
is specifically designed to engage
the senses, expand the mind and enhance the emotions of residents. All
Watercrest memory care associates are Certified Dementia Specialists and
programming focuses on innovative lifestyle approaches, including
personal life silhouettes, multi-sensory enhancements, Memories in the
Making, and Music and Memory programs.

All individuals with early stage memory loss from Alzheimer’s or
dementia are invited to join in choir rehearsals with their significant
other or caregiver, regardless of experience or skill level. Rehearsals
are held every Wednesday from 10am to 11:30am at Central Florida
Community Arts, located on the campus of Central Christian Church, 250
SW Ivanhoe Blvd., Orlando, 32804. For questions about the choir or how
to get involved, please contact Diana Acosta-Hosein at 407-937-1800, or
email Diana.hosein@cfcarts.com.
Registration information is available at http://www.tfaforms.com/200838.

Focused on the growth of servant leaders, Watercrest
Senior Living Group
encourages a commitment to serving others and
fulfilling needs in our hometowns through their Common Unity program, a
company-wide initiative supporting associates and residents in community
service and enrichment. For more information on Watercrest Senior Living
Group, their development projects and communities, please visit www.watercrestslg.com
or call 772-539-4560.

Contacts

For Watercrest Senior Living Group
Kathryn Vorkapich, 772-539-4553
Email:
kathryn@chandonnicholas.com