New book invites those living with dementia to 'Come Sit Awhile'

Cork County Libraries' collection is made to be read by or for people with dementia - including short stories, poems and recipes
New book invites those living with dementia to 'Come Sit Awhile'

Cork County Council Library and Arts Service has released a collection of short stories, poems and recipes that can be read by, or read to, a person with dementia. The book, called ‘Come Sit Awhile’, hopes to support reminiscing. Pictured at the launch in Innishannon are Emer O'Brien, County Librarian, Mayor of the County of Cork, Gillian Coughlan, author Alice Taylor and Deirdre Murphy Cork County Council Library Age Friendly Services. Picture Denis Boyle

A specially-curated selection of stories, poems and recipes, designed for reading by or to people with dementia, has been launched by Cork County Council Library and Arts Service.

‘Come Sit Awhile’ is designed to support reminiscing and conversation, and includes articles from long-running light-entertainment magazine Ireland’s Own, works by local historians, and family recipes from Darina Allen, including for her mother's apple pie.

The collection is part of the Library’s Age Friendly Programme which aims to create an inclusive place for older people, including those affected by dementia.

The title was inspired by a poem written by Alice Taylor, Corkonian best-selling writer.

Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey, says: 

"There are currently 64,000 people living with dementia in Ireland, the majority of which live in the community. Libraries are at the heart of these communities and play an essential role in providing information, services and access to resources for someone with dementia or their carers. 

"We want our libraries to be welcoming and inclusive spaces for the entire community. The ‘Come Sit Awhile’ collection is an important element in our work towards that. We also appreciate the support and advice of the HSE through their programme ‘Dementia: Understand together in Communities’."

Included in the book are six dementia-friendly short stories, that were entered in a competition held by the library service as part of the Bealtaine Programme, celebrating creativity in older age.

  • Copies of the book are now available to borrow from branches and library vans across County Cork.

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