Last weekend I was able to spend a little time on a retreat at Point Lonsdale. Having the time to walk on the beach, to pause and breathe was so restorative. This month I presented at a webinar facilitated by Palliative Care Queensland called Bucket lists, Wishes and Memory-making. Obviously, I did quite a bit of thinking about this topic and so it is not surprising my thoughts were influenced by this as I walked along the beach. Early one morning as I turned to retrace my steps along a long stretch of sand, I observed the places where I could still see my footprints very clearly, in other places there were just light traces and then there were stretches where they had completely disappeared. It was such a lovely metaphor for how we walk through life and the need to hold it all lightly. Sometimes there may be a stronger ‘imprint’ of us having been around, while at other times our participation or presence may no longer be seen at all.
This month we farewelled one of our treasured colleagues Cuong La, Research & Policy Leader, who has worked with SHA since August 2020. We have definitely felt Cuong’s imprint as part of our team in the joy and optimism he brought to every gathering. We see traces of Cuong’s time with us in the poster series, The Future of Spiritual Care report, the literature review, and the co-designed national model for spiritual care in health. Our deep thanks and gratitude to Cuong and we wish him much joy as he commences a new role with Kids First Australia.
This week a number of the team from SHA attended the Spiritual Care Australia conference here in Melbourne. It was such a privilege for me to give a vote of thanks at the conference dinner to Harriet Ziegler as she was recognised as a life member of SCA. What a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge and see those places where Harriet has walked among us.
There is much to read about this month as we come to the end of the financial year, that also marks the end of SHA’s current strategic plan 2021-2023. SHA continues to have a strong presence in the health sector. We look forward to sharing a new strategic plan with you next month as we continue to lead the integration of safe and high-quality spiritual care in healthcare.
Cheryl Holmes, CEO