NAO robot is a humanoid “in service” at the Paese Ritrovato in Monza, Italy, thanks to a project of the Cooperativa La Meridiana, co-financed by the Bank of Italy, and carried out in collaboration with Scuola Robotica. In Italian, by Paese Ritrovato they mean “We found ourselves in our old village again”, referring to the Alzheimer’s syndrome, losing memory and the sense of reality, and to the fact that at the Paese Ritrovato residents can recover them.
In fact, the Paese Ritrovato is a very special place, in Monza, Italy, a village housing and caring for people with Alzheimer’s disease. It covers an area intended for residential use of 3,360 square meters with an area used for stores and gathering places, with streets, squares, gardens, stores, the theater, the church, the pro loco, and the vegetable garden. The NAO robot has been used by the operators of Paese Ritrovato in sessions with residents, for edutainment, play, and cognitive support.
Humanoid robots are employed for assistance, both for entertainment and to support some learning and memory enhancement activities for people with various disabilities.
On April 15, 2021, the online conference was held to present the project at the conclusion of one year of activity. To review the online conference (in Italian): https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/recording/1283353684810269702
Roberto Mauri, director of La Meridiana Cooperative: Il Paese Ritrovato: a place of welcome and care
for people with Alzheimer’s.
Michela Bogliolo, Bioengineer, School Robotics: Recent developments in robotics for assistance.
Claudio Cavaleri Cooperativa La Meridiana: The role of an assistive robot in a care facility.
Andrea Fui, Computer Scientist, School of Robotics: A friendly useable assistance robots.
Marco Fumagalli Educator Cooperativa La Meridiana: Can a robot help in educational processes?
Filippo Bogliolo, Civil and Environmental Engineering, School of Robotics: Learning scenarios with NAO.
Paola Perfetti drama therapist: Feedback from the residents of Paese Ritrovato.
For several years now, humanoid robots have been used for assistance, both for fun and also to support some learning and memory enhancement activities of people with various disabilities.
The NAO robot is used by the operators of the Pese Ritrovato in edutainment, play, and cognitive support sessions.
The conference outlined some results of the use of NAO with residents during edutainment and memory enhancement sessions.
Dr. Paola Perfetti (picture below) is a drama therapist at La Meridiana, and the “Paese Ritrovato”. We asked her to talk about how the residents of the “Paese Ritrovato” have accepted and welcomed the NAO robot and the play and learning sessions with NAO. Here is the text of the interview with Dr. Perfetti (English). Paola Perfetti_Nao_robot_LabsResults
We found ourselves in our village again
Among the various care facilities of La Meridiana there is Il Paese Ritrovato, https://ilpaeseritrovato.it, a village that welcomes people with Alzheimer’s disease. Il Paese Ritrovato, as described by director Roberto Mauri, is “a real place that aims to slow cognitive decline and minimize disabilities in daily life, offering the resident the opportunity to continue to live a rich life appropriate to his or her abilities, desires, and needs”.
The pandemic has seriously challenged the Village’s social life, but they hope is that soon people will be able to come together to resume much of the activities that took place in the town prior to Covid-19.
Scuola di Robotica (www.scuoladibotica.it) is an association, Certified Educational&Training Body, that for 20 years applied robotics and digital technologies to improve the quality of life. School of Robotics programs and employs robots, even humanoid robots in activities to assist and support learning. These robots are used in Special Education, with children with autism spectrum syndrome, and as “assistants” in hospital activities.