Chaplains from Uniting Agewell, Rev Ann Simons and Trish Campbell, share their insights
into what chaplaincy really means from their experiences.
Throughout my life, I have heard about the presence of Hope and its importance. Sometimes you need to be at life’s crossroads and lose it all, to understand the
depth of meaning in such a small word.
Many years ago, the acronym of Holding Onto Promises Eternal took on a greater significance when I became the primary care-giver for my mum. and later when I began working in residential aged care.
We sit with, hold space for and hear other peoples’ experiences. Providing an environment where the light of hope can flourish, sometimes in the face of challenge and adversity, is a situation where all of us are in familiar territory.
The loss of hope is often faced by people when they can no longer continue living at home and enter residential aged care. Everything in their lives may seem to be in flux or change, and understandably, huge emotional shifts occur.
Hope develops through the building of connection and developing the required trust. This can only be achieved through a combination of 1:1 connection and building friendship groups based on an individual’s interests. Hope slowly builds as connections are developed and strengthened.
Being part of a collective community takes time. Maintaining, cementing and encouraging an existing faith connection all aids in this process.
Chaplaincy, Uniting AgeWell Andrew Kerr Care