Our project has 2 parts:
Part I - Education and Immersion.
6 x weekly x 90 minute sessions at Gibson Unit, Calvary St John's Palliative Care and Oncology Unit.
Each session has an education component, activity with Calvary staff and/or patients and a reflective de-brief. Starts February 18th.
Part II - Creative Response.
All participants, including adults will be asked to create a personal response to their experiences in Part I. It could be a piece of visual art, music, poem. Whatever takes their fancy!
The short term aim of this exciting pilot project is to educate and journey with Senior students from a class at St Mary’s College and Guilford Young College about Palliative and End of Life Care in the hospital setting.
The long term aim is to enhance our communites capacity to deal with death and dying in a more positive way and in so doing be able to support others who approaching and reaching the end of life. We also hope that the program will enhance the participants capacicity to personally live more "fully human, fully alive" lives.
Calvary staff, doctors, community members and organisations will be sharing their expertise about end of life care issues as well as their own stories and experiences with the participants.
At the conclusion of the 6 weeks, students and staff will respond by creating a personal response to their experiences. These responses will be shared with both the community of St Mary’s and Guildford Young College, the community of Calvary and the wider community. Response(s) could take the form of music, poetry, presentation, film, visual art.
Calvary plans to document and research the program. We also want to create our own response in the form of a short film (7-10 minutes) which will be shared at the conclusion of the course and be used as an education tool about Calvary and how we provide dignified pallitiave and end of life care for people as they are approaching and reaching the end of their life. Our vision is holistice health care which places people and their goals of care at the centre of their web of care.
The project is being funded by Calvary Hobart and Palliative Care Tasmania. The effectivenesss of the program will be evaluated as part of an approved Calvary Hobart research project.
At Calvary Hobart our vision as a Catholic not-for-profit hospital is to excel and be recognised as a continuing source of healing, hope and nurturing to the people and communities we serve. We believe that this project will help us live this vision in a creative and new way. Our values of hospitality, healing, stewardship and respect are the inspiration and foundation of this project.
2 Nov 2016
2 Aug 2016
Personally I want to thank everyone who has been involved in bringing this community engagement project to life. It has and continues to make a difference. The survey results for the program were incredibly positive and affirming. Programs such as this make a difference. Calvary hope to run a similar program in 2017 with new people and leaders. For information about this please contact Calvary Hobart Executive Office.
On a personal note, on the day I first viewed our DVD I found out that my Mum was diagnosed with a terminal cancer. It has been an incredibly difficult journey for our family. However, because of my involvement in this project and the fact that Mum and other family members had been engaged in what was happening with our program I have found dealing with some of what we have had to deal with less confronting. Mum had been watching the progress of our project from the blog and we had been talking about many of the topics we looked as during the course of the program, all before her diagnosis. It is as though we as a family were being prepared for the journey that we are now on.
At the heart of this project is the aim for people to have less fear around death and talking about death and dying so that they can embrace a more fully human and positive attitude to living. I know this aim has been fulfilled with me. Thank you everyone and may your quest in this space continue to be challenging and life affirming.
Over and out for Calvary Hobart Exploring Death, Dying and Palliative Care 2016
3 Jul 2016
The Video can be viewed here:
26 May 2016
18 May 2016
"This course has definitly helped me prepare myself for an eventual death that I know is coming"
"To me death, dying and palliative care can't be anything but personal. ..For me I experienced this recently with my dad and it was very full on. We never really got a break from the medical environment because we had to surround ourselves around it, hospital life became our home life not only for my dad but for the whole family. I feel that this course outlined death, dying and palliative care in the best way you could when it comes to explaining this topic" Brianna Pirere
"No-one knows what it is like to die, but what we do know is that there is a way that you can change your mind set about end of life... We can choose to accept death and see it as something beautiful or we can remain scared of death and wanting to avoid it"
"Watching the patients at St John's really inspired me to write this, along with the health care team that assisted throughout the ward. Seeing Virginia and what she had to go through, was also an inspiring experience. She was a positive person who didnt mind at all being treated, because she knew she was in the right place. She also inspired me." Madison Car
The piece I have drawn and written shows how talking about death/dying does not have to be a "hush/hush" topic. That it is OK to talk about it. There is no need to feel awkward or scared about bringing up the conversation. People need to be educated and have a better understanding of Palliative Care. The conversation needs to happen, no matter how hard it is. The more knowledge people have the easier it will be on the individual and families" Nadia Dandolo.
- painting by Lauren Baker
8 May 2016
My response to the project has been to rekindle and weave some of these memories of my Nan into my Tassie life. Soon after we started the project I got out a sewing machine that was new but unopened in its cerise Husqvarna box. Not since school have I sewed a stitch. Inspired by memories of my Nan I started sewing, nothing major just bits and bobs using my husband Andrew's old shirts. It appears that like my Nan I also hate waste, and love to upcycle. I had never thought we were similar but I must say through this project I feel her genetics or memories or fragments of her life ebbing in me. When I told my elder sister Jane what I was doing she said she had salvaged some fabric from the magical Carlingford sewing room which I could have. With the sewing machine, fabrics and old materials and tablecloths that I have been accumulating for years I have set up my own "sewing room". It is not as sunny, but it is starting to feel a little magical. I can sneak away to the room and sew, or dream of sewing, or sometimes just sit at the sewing machine. As part of my response to the project I have made my two daughters: Beatrix and Florence a skirt each, made from some of the remnants that my sister gave me. As I sat at the machine stitching away I smiled and laughed at how much free and whimsical joy I was getting out of making little gathered skirts for my daughters, in honour of my Nan.
1 May 2016
I was in Gibson this week and saw Virginia she was keen to hear how you were all going and our date for showcasing the works. At this stage we will look at early June.
The surveys have been coming in with really worthwhile feedback. I hope to share this in early June as well.
Be good to catch up on the 9th I can't wait to see your responses.