This team has proven that by working together, communities can prepare residents to have important conversations about the future.
As Fraser Health’s Regional Coordinator for Advance Care Planning, Cari Borenko Hoffman spends much of her time educating and supporting health care providers and community members about the importance of planning for the future. It’s an enormous task, made even more complicated when questions arise about not just health care, but legal and financial planning – topics outside of Fraser Health’s purview.
A partnership between the Ladner United Church Parish Health Team, Deltassist Family and Community Services Society, Delta Senior’s Planning Team, and Fraser Health has proven that by working together, communities can prepare residents to have these meaningful conversations. The partnership is a recipient of an Above and Beyond Best Collaboration Award for their work on “Planning for the future: Important information and conversations about medical, legal and financial decision making.”
“Cari works exceptionally hard across the region as a team of one with difficult, deliberate education, training and system improvement to support patient-centred conversations at the most vulnerable times in their life,” said Scott Brolin, Executive Director, Rehabilitation, Acquired Brain Injury, Palliative Care Program and Queens Park Care Centre / William Rudd House. He believes having community groups step in to amplify the message is crucial.
One day, Cari got a call from a community group wanting help with a planning session for their members. This time the call was from a retired Fraser Health nurse, Jane Marynowski, who is part of the Ladner United Church Parish Health Team. They were looking for Fraser Health’s Advance Care Planning workbooks.
Cari offered something better: she would come speak to them, bring the workbooks, and suggested they also include the financial and legal communities.
They offered something even better: they would organize a free day-long event in March.
The church aims to be a resource for Ladner, and the health team has been involved in efforts such as arranging opioid overdose training, offering a food skills for families course, and providing lunch events for seniors.
“This future planning event was a great experience of the community coming together,” said Jane, who enlisted the assistance of Kay Dennison from the Delta Seniors Planning team and Lyn Walker of Deltassist Family and Community Services Society, as well as organizers from similar events in Langley. Together with the Parish Health team they organized speakers, information booths from other community organizations, food donations, marketing and registration.
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