Wesley Enhanced Living Community Arts Coordinator Creates The Heartbeat Project

Community Arts Coordinator Jacob Dorfman Records Residents’ Natural Heartbeat and Blends with The Songs of their Lives

WARMINSTER, PA, June 26, 2023 – Wesley Enhanced Living Stapeley’s Community Arts Coordinator recently created the Heartbeat Song Project for residents and their loved ones. Jacob Dorfman, Temple University graduate with a degree in Music Therapy was inspired by his girlfriend’s innovative idea to combine older adults’ heartbeats with songs that make up their life story.

Back in February, Dorfman opened heartbeat recording sessions to residents and their families in honor of Valentines Day. He has a small device that looks like a stethoscope, which takes a voice memo of an individual’s natural heartbeat. From there, he asks the individuals what songs provided comfort in their lives or represent their specific story. He then conjoins those pre-recorded songs with their heartbeats, to create a seamless memento for residents and their loved ones.

“Being able to provide residents and their loved ones with such unique, personalized keepsakes is precisely why I love working at Wesley Enhanced Living,” shares Dorfman, Community Arts Coordinator at Wesley Enhanced Living. “The Heartbeat Song Project not only represents the person, but encapsulates the memories and experiences faced throughout their life.”

Since the creation of the Heartbeat Project, Dorman has worked with Dick and Phyllis Taylor, active advocates for the civil rights movement and residents of the Wesley Enhanced Living at Stapeley community. He met with the couple weekly to record features for several of their favorite songs that gave them strength and support throughout their lives, including songs they sang as they marched for civil rights, their wedding song and the song they would sing to each other when they first met.

Stapeley’s Director of Therapeutic Recreation Amy Van Burg says, “Music therapy plays an important role in our community, as we work hard to keep residents active and engaged in the things that matter to them and their loved ones.”

For more information, visit www.wel.org

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About Wesley Enhanced Living

For 135 years, Wesley Enhanced Living non-profit, continuing care retirement communities have been delivering a purpose-filled life to residents. Serving approximately 1,200 residents with over 1,100 employees and six locations throughout Pennsylvania, the Wesley Enhanced Living communities provide various combinations of independent living, personal care, memory care, rehabilitation, and skilled nursing services. For more information about a community near you in Doylestown, Hatboro, Media, or Philadelphia, please visit www.WEL.org

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