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Life Stories

Image for Life Stories.

Life Stories is a group of professional storytellers who specialise in providing tailored storytelling and reminiscence sessions for older people in a range of settings, from hospitals and day centres to lunch clubs and church groups.

Older people, particularly the frail elderly and those with dementia, are often marginalised within our communities, and many have little or no access to the arts and social experiences. Knowing the rich wealth of stories that older people have to share, and the increasing demand for storytelling in the community, Life Stories was set up in 2003 with the support of the Scottish Storytelling Centre.

Life Stories aims to:

  • provide older people and their carers with opportunities for participation in quality, inclusive arts activities
  • recognise, value and affirm older people's memories, life experiences and contribution to the wider community
  • use storytelling and reminiscence to entertain, combat loneliness and isolation, and provide opportunities for socialising and conversation
  • use storytelling and reminiscence to rekindle imagination, trigger memories and increase communication
  • to build confidence and motivation, and combat feelings of depression

“Older people love hearing stories and telling theirs as they are given the chance to reminisce. Conversation is initiated and it builds confidence and trust. Staff and carers benefit in that they get a picture of what the client’s life was like when they were in their prime and what they managed to achieve – some were giants in their time. The client benefits by gaining recognition – it is so important that we are ‘seen’.

These things are important to all, especially to those whose short term memory is faltering indeed by stimulating the long term memory with story interaction they are able, very able, to get a sense of worth and joy. You take them back to a time when life was sweet.”

Millie Gray, Life Stories founder member

Life Stories also lead training workshops for professional staff, carers and volunteers who work with older people and are interested in using storytelling and reminiscence in developing their storytelling skills.

“The best cheerer upper for the winter months”

Artlink Vintage Club member

“I was impressed and feel more confident now regarding using storytelling in my job...would welcome more workshop experience.” 

Life Stories workshop participant