I had a new writing and photography feature published in CARE magazine, about the nursing program at Northern Lakes College. I so enjoyed my time up north, visiting Slave Lake, High Prairie, Valleyview and Grande Prairie. I experienced such warm hospitality and was impressed by the nurses’ passion to bring education to the people in rural and remote areas.
I am doing a lot of corporate writing, so I’m very happy to keep my finger in the freelance writing world. I just had an article and photographs published in the CLPNA’s CARE magazine, called Transforming Care (page 9).
This piece is about an initiative that is expanding the role of the LPNs at the Medicine Units at the University of Alberta Hospital. What really struck me when I came in to take photos and conduct the interviews was the sense of teamwork within the nursing group and the pride of accomplishment from all members for the LPNs’ new role. It was heartening to see such camaraderie on a nursing unit – and I’m sure that reflects in the quality of care that patients get too.
On pages 14-16 of the new CARE magazine, you’ll find my article ‘It’s Easy Being Green’. Yes, that’s a reference to the Kermit the Frog song.
I didn’t take the photos this time, but I did learn a lot about environmentalism – from two historically un-green industries: printing and event planning.
Kudos to Ion Print Solutions and Oomph Events for their innovative business practices. And the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta for choosing vendors who have a green lens…
grandview extended care
I’m thrilled to bits to announce that my latest feature written and photographed for CLPNA’s Care Magazine is now on-line. It is called Myth Busting, and features photos and interviews from some of my favourite people in the world: nurses who work in the world of continuing care.
I have my own story about working in continuing care. A long long time ago, in the decade they call the ’80′s, I worked part-time at the Mewburn Veterans Home as a nursing attendant, while I was going to the University of Alberta. And studying Shakespeare and Art History. Talk about a contrast in my life. I used to go directly to my English classes on campus still wearing my nursing uniform.
Being a nursing attendant was hard work, but exceedingly rewarding. I’ve carried the experience I had at the Vet’s Home into everything I do in the health system.
The folks that provide hands-on, bedside care to the most vulnerable are very dear to my heart.
So sometimes I write and I don’t get paid for it. But that’s ok, because I do that for organizations I volunteer for. Like the Canadian Family Advisory Network (CFAN). Of which I happen to be chair.
I wrote a piece for London Health Science Centre in Ontario about a family who frequents their Cystic Fibrosis Clinic and have two delightful little girls with CF. We are trying to celebrate family centred care initiatives in Canada. To learn more about family centred care, visit the Institute for Family Centered Care website.
Here’s the link to the London article, off our CFAN website. If you click around the site, you will find all sorts of information about what’s happening at health facililites here in Canada to include a family voice in the care of their children. Of which I feel pretty passionately about…
I wrote an article called Hushed Drama – life in the OR, about LPNs in the Operating Room, for the CLPNA’s Care magazine in the spring. It was just published, and I’m really happy with it. It was a collaborative effort with five different interviews and an extensive photo shoot.
My favourite kind of work is profiling folks who work in health care. There are a lot of unsung heroes out there – not used to the spotlight, but passionate about their work. And they are doing good, important work.
The photo shown above was chosen as the cover shot. (It appears as a mirror image on the magazine). That’s a first for me.
I wrote two articles in the Spring issue of the College of Licensed Practical Nurses Care Magazine. One was the feature on LPNs in pre-hospital practice called (cleverly) Care in the Air, where I learned about the exciting world of emergency care.
The other piece is one of my favourite articles I have ever written. I wrote a short bit about a woman named Emma, who is 102 years old and lives in an assisted living facility. I had a great amount of reverence when I walked into her room with my notepad and my camera, and learned that people’s seemingly ordinary lives are always extraordinary when tempered with love.
Last week, I interviewed a woman who is turning 102 years old next month. This is for an article in the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta’s Care Magazine. I’ll post the link when it is published in March.
I was thinking how fortunate I am to have a job where I get to meet people who are 101 years old. And chat with them and take photos, too. Meeting extraordinary people I would never ordinarily come across is a definite perk to my job. I’m continually humbled by it, and thankful for such opportunities. I mean, have you ever met anybody who has lived through two World Wars?
I went to Washington DC last week for three days to canvass for the Obama campaign. I went down because I believed in Obama’s message.
I hooked up with dual-citizen friends and we worked in Northern Virginia. We went to Obama’s last campaign rally in Manassas Virginia. And we celebrated hard at 11 pm EST when CNN declared Obama the 44th president of the United States.
I pitched my trip as a story idea to a couple of places. Nobody was interested. But that’s ok. What I came back with from this experience was the knowledge that people are decent and good. And that hope is a more powerful motivator than fear.
And a re-realization in the power of storytelling. If you listen to Obama speak, he always weaves in a personal story in his speeches. People respond to people – not to political machines or corporations. I was very proud of the Americans on November 4. Hope. Believe. Change.
The College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta has released the fall version of their Care magazine. In it is a feature on Dave Dearden entitled: Changing Gears – from trucks to scrubs. (Scroll down to page 18).
I did both the words and the photos for this piece, and I immensely enjoyed the entire experience. Dave is a fascinating guy with a colourful story…he was thoughtful and analytical about his life choices.
Dave taught me that everybody has a story that needs to be told. I hope he is an inspiration to other LPNs out there. Being an LPN is one of the toughest jobs in the health sector, and they deserve to be celebrated. Thanks to Dave for his openness, colleague Tim for his sportsmanlike conduct, and my two models: Kaitlynn and Ella.