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Sunshine Care participates in “Memories in the Making,” a program of a creative art expression facilitated by a local artist in partnership with the San Diego Alzheimer’s Association. Originating in Orange County, the program was launched at the San Diego/Imperial Chapter in 1998 to help people with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia express themselves through the creative art of painting.

Groups of five to 10 individuals gather weekly at Sunshine Care to paint under the guidance of an Artist in Residence, who is specifically trained by the Alzheimer’s Association to work with individuals with Alzheimer’s and other dementia. The process is tailored to provide structure and support for the residents, while at the same time, allowing each individual to create his or her own message on the paper. It is not unusual for our residents to paint memories from long ago or something they can no longer find the words to express. Through the process of painting, these individuals are able to produce a tangible means of expression, which speaks to the families, the professional caregivers and the public.

Each year after the work is juried, there are presentations around town and an auction showcasing the art of Alzheimer’s artists. This raises both awareness of the disease and understanding of individuals with the disease, while providing funding for Alzheimer’s Association chapter programs.

Artwork created through the “Memories in the Making” program is featured at the San Diego Alzheimer Association’s Memories in the Making Gala each spring.