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Hymn singalongs for Alzheimer's

$4,820 of $4,000 goal

Raised by 26 people in 11 months
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Music helps people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias to joyfully connect with long-term memories. For many, classic hymns and spirituals – Amazing Grace, The Old Rugged Cross, Were You There, How Great Thou Art, and dozens more – are a strong link to a longtime faith and happy memories of going to church on Sunday morning.

As a nondenominational chaplain for elders with Alzheimer's and dementia, I found to my surprise that no downloadable, classic hymn singalongs arranged for people with dementia currently exist. So I decided to create them myself for the people I serve – and for anyone to download, for free.

The Project
My goal is to create 70-plus professional-quality, studio digital recordings of classic hymns and spirituals arranged as singalongs for people with dementia. Specifically, that means:
·  A slower tempo
·  Fewer verses (for example, two verses instead of the typical four or five)
·  Minimal "frills"
·  A lower key

Listen to samples here! 

Each hymn or spiritual will have a simple piano and vocals accompaniment with no fancy embellishments, making them ideal for singalongs. When finished, I'll make the recordings available for FREE on my website, SpiritualEldercare.com .

By combining these free downloads with my already created church agendas  (also free on my site), any activity director, chaplain, or even family member can easily provide a nondenominational worship service for elders with dementia – or simply a personalized, singalong playlist for use at home. 

Let me hasten to point out that people of any faith background or no faith background love this music! The songs come from the Christian worship tradition, but elders from other faiths regularly come to my meetings, enjoy the songs, and tell me they’re glad they came.

Use of Funds
The bulk of funds will go for the studio time, musician fees, and music copies. In late May, the musicians and I recorded 15 songs as a trial run, so that has given me a fairly good idea of the overall budget. If funds accumulate, I'll continue with additional sets for a total of 75 songs  (and maybe more, including a Christmas set).

What You Can Do
If you've been touched by Alzheimer's or dementia and/or you love the power of timeless music, please donate any amount to make these recordings a reality. Whether it's $5, $20, $100 ... every bit will go to the project and ministry. (If you prefer, you can send me a check directly; contact me through spiritualeldercare.com/contact.) 

Also, if you feel so led, please email this fundraiser to your friends, post it on your Facebook page, tweet it out, repost my Instagrams, send carrier pigeons, whatever. My deep desire is for people to know that these singalong recordings will soon be available for anyone to use.

FAQ
Read more FAQ (frequently asked questions)  on my website, and feel free contact me .

Thank you!
I have so appreciated the encouragement I've gotten so far. Thank you for reading, for any donation you care to give, and for your love for elders with dementia.
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Thanks to all of you who have made it possible, the Hymns for Alzheimer's project feels like a flower getting ready to bloom!

I'm thrilled to report:

+ 60 hymns are now recorded and in the sound editing and mixing stage. I'm hoping to get them uploaded here in November -- woo hoo!
+ I'm working to line up a gospel set, with songs that include "The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power," "I'm on the Battlefield," "This Little Light of Mine," and 12 more. I'd appreciate prayers and good thoughts for getting this together with the right musicians and timing.
+ I'm also working on lining up a Christmas set of 18 songs. With luck we might get that recorded in time for the 2018 Advent season, but that's a long shot. If not, they'll be ready for next year.

Right now I'm soliciting feedback on about 10 semi-finished recordings from people who have more music experience than I do, to get a sense of how the songs sound to them. It's a little intimidating :) but I really want the feedback before I work with the sound engineer on the final mixing.

Lots more to complete, but it's getting close and I couldn't be more thrilled. Nearly every week, I get a grateful message from someone who does eldercare who has found my website (thank you Google); they get even more excited when I tell them about the upcoming free music downloads that will soon be available.

And for me personally, recording these beautiful songs has soothed my soul and continues to calm my heart and mind through some difficult times. Words like these are hard to beat:

Through many dangers, toils, and snares,
I have already come;
‘Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

Thank you again for your continued support, and please contact me at any time with questions or suggestions.

Peace be with you,
Elisa

PS - Because of your generosity, the financial goal is surpassed, so I'm going to suspend this fundraising page for now. Bless all of you!
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WOW! This fundraiser just surpassed my $4,000 goal! I am so, so grateful and amazed. Thank you everyone, from the bottom of my heart. I just finished two eldercare services today and as usual, I saw how much these songs and spiritual care mean to these dear people -- so making this music widely available, SOON, is a dream come true. If there is anyone you know who needs these resources, let them know they're on the way!

Nuts and bolts: Dave and I will be on vacation for the next 3 weeks. The 50 already recorded songs are with the sound engineer, who will be tweaking them according to my editing notes. When I return, I hope to set up some vocalists for a "gospels/spirituals" set ... and polish off the last few songs on my wish list ... AND possibly, given that the funds are there, set up a Christmas songs recording session!

It's all blowing me away. Seeing this dream coming together is just ... well, I have no words.

I can't wait to let you know when they're all finished. Thank you all.
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Woo hoo! Had a great recording session on July 20 and now have 50 songs recorded. My next task is to go through them one by one to listen for edits (I'm going to ask some musical experts for help with this -- I figure more ears are better than two). After that I'll plan our next recording session for sometime in September.

I don't have words to describe how grateful I am to see this actually happening. I can hardly wait for the entire cache to be ready for final mixing and release.

Financially, I'm super close! (A few donations came to me directly.) Please continue to share this as widely as you like; even more than donations, I want people to know that these resources are coming soon.

Blessings and eternal thanks,
Elisa

PS - I forgot to take photos from our last session, except for this one of Richard Capp tuning the studio piano (which he has done before every single session). Again, no words could do justice to his amazing piano skills and enthusiasm for this project.
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We've now done two recording sessions and have 33 digital files! Only 42 more songs to go :) ... then we'll do the final editing and mixing.
Get the latest update and LISTEN TO SAMPLES here: https://spiritualeldercare.com/2018/07/02/hymns-for-alzheimers-recordings-update-and-samples/
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$4,820 of $4,000 goal

Raised by 26 people in 11 months
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