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Registration Now Open For Spiritual Care Course

During critical times of suffering, trauma or loss, spiritual health can play a vital role in helping patients find their peace, inner strength and courage. It is during these moments of uncertainty that patients may need to regain their spiritual focus, recover their sense of purpose and reconnect with their beliefs.

Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority’s spiritual health services program is once again offering the Spirit of Caring course this fall. It is a nine week course that prepares volunteers to accompany and support people in a health care setting in a respectful, caring and compassionate way.

Marion Magnusson, Interlake-Eastern’s spiritual health services coordinator for the west side of the region, explained spiritual care offers holistic healing. It is the activity of devoting presence, attention and respectful listening to people in helping them discern the meaning in life now—in this time and place―perhaps in the midst of a health crisis.

“It is through learning about spirituality that your own perspective on life will change ―you will grow in understanding more about yourself in the diversity of expressing who we are as human beings,” said Magnusson. “Our awareness of the cultural lens we wear will develop a broader scope to embrace the spiritual in all faith communities. Additionally, you will learn how to be available to another, to be quiet with another and to listen without having to respond ―to be fully present with another. ” 

Participants will learn practical applications of spirituality in a variety of situations in health care, including how to recognize, respect and support a spiritual need, and how to attend to spiritual distress, conflict and dilemma in themselves and others.

Debra Perrault from Stonewall took the course in the spring and has since become a spiritual health volunteer with the regional health authority. She found the experience rewarding and enjoyed exploring the diversity of spiritual traditions, beliefs and cultures.

“If everyone signed up for this course, the world would be a much happier and kinder place. I can’t say enough about how much this course has taught me; it opened up a new world,” said Perrault. “No matter what we have as beliefs, we are all connected in some way. We have to find common ground and work together.”

The course is a pre-requisite for spiritual health services volunteers. It runs from September 21 to November 16 at the E. M. Crowe Memorial Hospital in Eriksdale, Thursdays from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The deadline to register is September 7, 2017. There is a $100 fee that will be waived for those who become spiritual health services volunteers. For details and to register contact Marion Magnusson at 204-785-7028, cell: 204-641-1379 or mmagnusson@ierha.ca.

About Interlake-Eastern RHA’s Spiritual Health Services

Spiritual health services’ objective is to advance the integration of spiritual care in health care through education, promotion, and clinical practice in order to facilitate healing, improve patient experience and satisfaction and to help people faced with illness, suffering and grief find comfort and meaning― whoever they are, whatever they believe, wherever they are. There are currently two spiritual care coordinators serving the east and west side of Interlake-Eastern RHA.

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