Creative activities as part of occupational therapy practice, cognitive and physical empowerment and socialization are considered as fundamental priorities in everyday life, here, at Nea Thalpi.
The latest research in the area of cognitive skills has shown that the combination of mental and physical exercise helps to maintain and even improve higher-order cognitive abilities in older adults, even over 80 years old. Creativity, i.e. the ability to produce something new, and to find novel solutions to everyday challenges in the form of practical intelligence, does not decline with age. Older people have the potential to evolve. A supportive and reinforcing environment encourages and motivates people to try and express their interests and curiosity. Such an environment acts therapeutically for people with cognitive disabilities by providing pleasant and attractive sensory stimulation.
The purpose of our events and activities is the holistic mobilization and activation of people to the extent that they can, even if the only thing achieved is their passive participation. Through socialization, the individual regains social skills and confidence in social interactions and develops strategies to adapt to a new environment. This process, in conjunction with social comparison theory and noble emulation, is capable of inducing cognitive benefits to the individual. Let us remember that people are and remain, despite their disease, sociable beings.
Discussion sessions, computer-based activities, quizzes, hangman, sudoku, painting or drawing, handicrafts, music, therapeutic dance, memory training, puzzles, construction games, reading newspapers, reading the Bible, celebrating National Days, birthdays, Christmas, Halloween, May Day, Easter, even watching movies and playing group games with the Nintendo game console and so much more, are knitted together to form a colourful mosaic that makes life at Nea Thalpi more attractive and diverse.
"As we must exercise our bodies, so we must keep our minds busy in order to be healthy. Both cognitive, and physical abilities when not used, decline over time."
"Use IT or Lose IT", American gerontologists suggest, and Greek common wisdom is straightforward on that matter, "Whatever you let go, lets you go". This wise saying has been scientifically proven by groundbreaking research.
In Nea Thalpi, we never give up ... no single day is ever the same.