Meaningful Ageing Australia Sept 2016 update
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From the CEO

You can't know what you don't know

image of Ilsa Hampton, CEO

We found in consultations during the development of the National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care that, ironically, in organisations who had a strong profile for professional spiritual care services (such as pastoral care), other staff tended to see themselves as entirely outside the spiritual care picture. 

Feedback we are receiving from people working in aged care is that many leaders as well as care staff have not been taught anything about spirituality and spiritual care in their formal courses. They may now be employed by a faith-based organisation and even then, can feel entirely in the dark about what it is all about.

Education is a fundamental building block from which spiritual care can be built, although it will never be enough on its own.  We have had strong positive feedback about the 'umbrella' image in the National Guidelines as one way into this conversation. 

Religious care - offered by faith community representatives

Spiritual care - everyone can contribute through the way they work 

Pastoral care - specialised spiritual care

To what kind of introductory experience have your staff had access? It is important that any learning experience about spirituality and spiritual care is not entirely book-based. Our popular introductory 45 minute orientation program for spiritual care is a great place to start. This is suitable for staff in all roles - the best results come about when every single staff member participates in the program.

If your organisation is already running a basic orientation, have a think about how you are empowering your leaders to really understand what it's all about and how this impacts their role as leaders. This can be quite complex if you are a faith-based organisation as assumptions tend to flow readily from both the organisation and individual staff.

You may have seen our new seminar series An Introduction to Spiritual Care for Leaders. If you are in the area, there's still time to register for our seminars in Wagga Wagga and Newcastle. Let us know if you would like to host a seminar in your location.

In terms of other education activities, we have just signed off on an agreement to adapt an already tried and tested spirituality in aged care education program that will take staff who have completed the orientation program to the next level (read more below). This is designed for staff across all roles. We are looking forward to making this available for you to implement, and to support you in doing so if you don't have anyone who can lead it for you. Watch this space.

The video of the Sydney National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care pre-release seminar will soon be available for viewing. Thanks to the Aged Care Channel for the huge support with this.

We are running education sessions with the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency Assessors about the National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care later this year. 

In partnership with HTN and ACC we are launching a ground-breaking spiritual care volunteer education program in the middle of 2017.

I encourage you to review your own team's level of confidence in understanding and implementing spiritual care beyond supporting specialist roles.

Until next time,
- Ilsa Hampton

Spirituality and Social Work - friends or foes? 

Some of our members have been talking to Stephanie to assist with our Spiritual Care Consideration Series. 

Hi my name is Stephanie and I’m a Masters of Social Work student on my final placement at Meaningful Ageing Australia. I was drawn to this placement because of the gaps in social work education in both ageing and spirituality and thought this would be a great way to fast track my knowledge in both of these areas! A particular area of work I am interested in is grief and bereavement counselling. Addressing a person’s spiritual needs at this time is a necessity in holistic practice. However, there are many caring professions who not explicitly address spirituality and social work falls into this category.

Read more here.

Calling all big-picture thinkers

Does thinking about legislation and policy make your neurons tingle? Do you love finding the right lever in the right place expressed in the right way to bring about positive change for older people? Read on!
Aged care in Australia is undergoing massive change. Meaningful Ageing Australia is calling for expressions of interest for member organisations and other interested parties to join our Policy Working Group.
To begin, we will be focussing on the single set of aged care quality standards. Contact us if you are interested in contributing as part of the Working Group and/or being called on for input.

International Day of Older Persons  

1 October 2016 

Theme: Take a stand against ageism

Our Melbourne Meaningful Ageing Seminar included a fantastic, creative session with Dr Catherine Barrett about combating ageism. Members can view the video here.

Resources from the World Health Organisation

Welcome to our newest members

We are pleased to welcome the following organisations who are showing their commitment to quality of life for older people by joining Meaningful Ageing Australia:
  • Arcare
  • Clayton Church Homes Vic
  • HarbisonCare NSW
  • Kirkbrae Vic
  • Lutheran Aged Care Albury NSW
  • Outlook Gardens Vic
  • Southern Cross Care (Vic)

As well as now having access our ever-growing range of high quality, practical resources, their membership supports our work with the government and key agencies towards having spiritual care included in all models of care.

Feature resource

Spiritual Care Considerations Series

Now including

  • Jewish Spirituality and End of Life
  • Transition into Residential Aged Care
  • Staff Supporting Each other When a Resident/Client Dies

Not a 'how to' but a 'how about'

  • The Spiritual Care Considerations Series is a set of short (one page) guiding thoughts and questions 
  • Supports culturally appropriate and sensitive care
  • Designed as a helpful prompt for staff and volunteers working at any level in the organisation
  • Developed in consultation with experts and experienced practitioners
  • New topics are added throughout the year
  • They can be used as a talking point in staff and/or volunteers meetings and/or as a reference point when assessing or reviewing the needs of a new resident or client in your service
  • Members can save, print and/or send copies of these documents to anyone within your organisation

Education for spirituality in aged care
- next steps

SHV developed and trialled a Spirituality in Aged Care Professional Development Program in 2014. A number of aged care facilities across Australia have purchased the program and delivered it to their staff. With the recent launch of the National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care the SHV program offers one resource for organisations to implement the Guidelines. Meaningful Ageing Australia, as the national organisation for spiritual care in aged care, is best placed to work with the aged care sector in the implementation of the Guidelines. To further this work SHV has entered into an agreement with Meaningful Ageing Australia giving them the rights to distribute and further develop the program. 

All enquiries for the Spirituality in Aged Care Professional Development Program should now be directed to: Meaningful Ageing Australia: PH: +61 3 8387 2274

Awards Finalists

Innovative, person-centred aged care organisations have been recognised, with 6 finalists announced in the 2016 Meaningful Ageing Australia Awards. 

Bethanie (WA) 
Carrington (NSW) 
Villa Maria (Catholic Healthcare, NSW) 

IRT Kangara Waters (NSW) 
Peninsula Villages (NSW)
Salvation Army Aged Care Plus (NSW/ACT)

Winners will be announced at our public Awards Event in Newcastle on 21st October 2016 to be held in conjunction with a Meaningful Ageing Seminar. Read more

Other News

Spiritual Care recognised as allied health profession in Victorian hospitals

In August the Chief Allied Health Advisor for the Department of Health & Human Services in Victoria, Kath Philip, informed a meeting of the Allied Health Directors Group that spiritual care practitioners (inclusive of pastoral care) are now recognised as an allied health profession in Victoria.

We believe that this is a significant acknowledgment of the role of spiritual care as an integral component of health care and we welcome this decision. The work that SHV has done on the Capabilities Framework 2011 and the release of the new framework documents this year provided clear evidence of the contribution and place of spiritual care.  
(Reproduced from Spiritual Health Victoria)

Wagga Wagga & Newcastle
Register now!
Meaningful Ageing Seminars

An Introduction to Spirituality for Leaders

Wagga Wagga Friday, 14 October 2016 11.30am-3.00pm
Wagga Wagga Senior's Community Centre (lunch included) supported by Meaningful Ageing member BaptistCare.

Newcastle Friday 21 October 2016 1.00pm-4.30pm including our national awards presentation and hosted by Meaningful Ageing member Calvary Aged Care & Retirement Services.

Wagga Wagga facilitated by Meaningful Ageing Australia Senior Educator, Dr Chris Turner (pictured)

Newcastle facilitated by Meaningful Ageing Australia CEO Ilsa Hampton

Meaningful Ageing Australia Member Organisations:
$30 per person plus GST and booking fee 

Non-Members: $120 per person plus GST and booking fee
Includes afternoon tea and networking opportunities

Online registrations and further information is here.
Did you miss our National Guidelines Special Launch Edition? Read more here!

Meaningful Ageing Australia Events - open to the public

Meaningful Ageing Seminar - Wagga Wagga 14 October 2016

Meaningful Ageing Seminar and National Awards Presentation -
Newcastle 21 October 2016

Launch of ConnecTo, spiritual screening tool - Melbourne November 2016

Other upcoming Events

Selwyn Institute for Ageing & Spirituality,
NZ Gerontology & Nursing Conference 7 Dec 2016

7th International Conference on Ageing and Spirituality Chicago  4-7 June 2017
Click here to view our 2 minute videos
Membership Information
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Meaningful Ageing Australia · 34 - 54 Poplar Road, (Gate 4, Building 8) · PO Box 2127 Royal Melbourne Hospital VIC 3050 · Parkville, Victoria 3050 · Australia

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