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4/9/2012 8:01:00 AM
NORAZ puts prose to Alzheimer's Poetry Project
Christopher Ya’ir Lane, Founder and Director of NORAZ: The Literary Arts for Rural Arizona and The Alzheimer’s Poetry Project: Arizona Assignment, interacts with residents at a healthcare facility in Phoennix suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease, using poetry to spark memories and create positive interaction. Photo credit: Nicole Escudero
Christopher Ya’ir Lane, Founder and Director of NORAZ: The Literary Arts for Rural Arizona and The Alzheimer’s Poetry Project: Arizona Assignment, interacts with residents at a healthcare facility in Phoennix suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease, using poetry to spark memories and create positive interaction. Photo credit: Nicole Escudero

If You Go ...
• What: Alzheimer's Poetry Project Open Session

• When: April 16, 2012, 10:30 a.m.

• Where: Kachina Point Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, 505 Jacks Canyon Rd.

• How Much: Free

• More Info: Contact Christopher Lane at (928) 301-3744


Did you know that Alzheimer's disease currently affects approximately 5.1 million Americans?

On April 16, Founder and Director of NORAZ: The Literary Arts for Rural Arizona, and The Alzheimer's Poetry Project: Arizona Assignment, Christopher "Ya'ir" Lane, will offer an open poetry reading session with the residents of Kachina Point Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center's Reflections Unit. Caregivers, nurses, family members of those suffering from AD, and anyone with an interest in enhancing the quality of life for AD sufferers, are invited to attend this intimate gathering in the Village of Oak Creek, at 10:30 a.m.

"The APP is about making contact with people who may have very little physical contact in their lives," states the APP website.

"We recite the poems directly to the folks, often holding their hands. It is not unusual for visitors to become emotionally moved when witnessing a reading session."

Based on the work of Gary Glazner, Founder of the APP, and his book, "Sparking Memories," volunteers around the world, like Lane, receive training through the APP to better understand AD, and how to interact with those affected by it.

Lane founded the Arizona chapter of the APP in 2005 and is currently serving 19 facilities in 8 cities, but his goal is to expand even further, with the help of additional volunteers.

NORAZ's Publicist Megan Aronson attended a session in January, shortly before her grandmother, a school teacher in the Verde Valley for over 30 thirty years, died from AD.

"Many of them couldn't remember their names," said Aronson.

"But when he embraced each person, and asked, 'What's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen?' they came to life, and tried to answer his question. I left there thinking, 'That's the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.'"

In 2006, Christine Walker, former Executive Director of Kachina Point Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center, sat in on one of Lane's performances, later commending his performance.

"I was able to watch his performance last week and was amazed by the response he was able to receive from residents who respond to very little...Smiles, laughs, and even tears showed how much he touched our residents."

Lane invites those interested in witnessing the power of poetry and it's ability to "spark memories," on April 16.

Visitors should arrive at 10:15 a.m. and meet Lane in the foyer of Kachina Point Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center located at 505 Jacks Canyon Road.

For more information, contact Lane at (928) 301-3744.

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