Museum Mystery Suitcase: Outreach Kit for Seniors

About the kits

Seniors in assisted living or long-term care can engage with mystery objects to stimulate thinking and to spend time sociably with others.

Since the objects are mysteries, seniors don’t have to worry about whether or not they remember. Instead they can share their ideas and guesses in a judgment-free environment.

How to order

As the Royal BC Museum re-opens and we adjust to a “new normal”, we are considering the advice and requirements of government and health authorities. We have cancelled all  programs until January 2021, to give us adequate time to implement new protocols to safeguard both staff and visitors. 

You can still engage with us at home. Check out our online programs by visiting


The kits are available for loan to care facilities, independent living residences, seniors clubs, care providers and associations in BC. The cost is $75 plus applicable taxes for a two-week loan. A limited number of kits are available, so plan accordingly.


What’s in the kit?

There are five artifacts from the Royal BC Museum’s handling collection and one reproduction item. The artifacts have been selected to represent a variety of collections at the museum and to stimulate interest and discussion among participants. 

The kit is intended to:

  • Offer an opportunity for seniors to socialize.
  • Stimulate thinking.
  • Provide variety and interest and promote well-being.
  • Share objects from the Royal British Columbia Museum with people who cannot physically visit the museum.

Before you use the kit

Review the resource guide and plan your activity. The suggested program length is one hour and the number of participants should be no more than ten at a time. When you are ready, promote the program to your residents or invite specific members to attend. Become familiar with the objects in the kit and have fun.

Using the kit

When the kit arrives, check that everything is included and undamaged.  If the kit arrives damaged or is damaged while you’re using it, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us: we expect some wear and tear, and we can attend to it better if you let us know.  Unpack the objects and place them on a table and cover them with the provided cloth. Set up chairs around the table so everyone can see. When the program begins, bring out one item at a time, pass it around and let the conversation begin.

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Get in Touch

Kim Gough
Learning Program Developer

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