We are a collective of professional artists who intend to make interventions in nursing homes and institutions for people with disabilities.
“As Vassourinhas” is the name we chose for our group because we believe that our artistic intervention helps to improve the environments of institutions and brings lightness to the people institutionalized. In this sense, we need your help to finance visits by professional artists to nursing homes, day centers, palliative care units and institutions for people with disabilities.
We believe that the various forms of art have the power to enrich the elderly and the homes where they live, which is why in our visits we use different forms of art such as music, magic, physical theater, improvisation, dance, poetry and the language of the clown in which all our artists have academic and professional training in the arts and are qualified to work in a clinical context.
What are the benefits of the presence of professional clowns in these institutions?
One of the main benefits is to reduce the social isolation of elderly people through art. One of the clown's most important tools is to bring laughter into environments. When good humor and laughter are shared they bring people together, increase intimacy and contribute to a state of happiness. Laughing is also important for mental health because it releases serotonin and endorphins, which are substances that bring a feeling of well-being, pleasure and joy, reducing the risk of psychosomatic illnesses, such as depression, anxiety and stress. Having a good laugh also helps the heart system function properly. When we smile, blood flow increases, helping to control blood pressure and protecting against heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems. It also strengthens the immune system and increases energy levels.
Clown visits to homes also promote the mental health of elderly people in the fight against diseases such as Alzheimer's and Dementia. According to studies, Portugal has an incidence rate of dementia in the population of 1.7%, higher than the European average (1.55%). The art of the clown enhances the active memory of the elderly, through an artistic methodology that takes into account the recovery of stories, life memories, songs, poems and the knowledge of the elderly. In the case of people with cognitive disabilities, these interventions will also help to reduce the intensity of their mental illnesses.
The clowns' intervention also contributes to increasing the self-esteem of the elderly and people with disabilities because it puts the person in the spotlight, through the presence, affection and full attention dedicated to them. It makes you feel important, special and belonging. Another very important factor is that this work also brings benefits to the entire team that works in the institutions, as the presence of artists in the home breaks the daily routine of caregivers, providing more lightness and joy, thus alleviating the stress caused by the demand. daily work of these professionals.