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A National Vision


Over the last thirty years evidence has mounted on the need to recognise the place of spirituality in both the ageing and dying processes, together with the value of both specialist pastoral care and general spiritual care in supporting people as they age and approach the end of their life span. This work is based on best practice and not confined to religious support. Since our beginning, we have grown to working with more than hundred organisations nationally, who collectively touch the lives of more than 200 000 older people. 


Click to read more history

A ‘search conference process’ in 2008 at a CAPS conference in Canberra led to the creation of a vision of a national organisation to progress the cause of evidence-based, integrated pastoral and spiritual care. With strong support from leaders in the aged care sector, including the provision of seeding funding and commitments by 22 organisations to contribute significant foundation funding, our organisation was incorporated in December 2012 (under the name PASCOP).

The inaugural Board was elected in February 2013 including a number of leaders from the aged care sector.

The inaugural EO, David Petty,  was appointed simultaneously.

The current CEO, Ilsa Hampton, commenced March 2016.

In April 2016, the Board proposed a name change to the membership: Meaningful Ageing Australia. The new name was designed to more effectively communicate our intent to a wider audience. The proposal was unanimously accepted.

A range of benefits and services continue to be developed ensuring a strong future for Meaningful Ageing Australia as we provide practical support to member organisations looking to establish and/or enhance the integration of spiritual care in their organisation.

We continue to promote understanding of the importance of integrated spiritual care in services that older people are accessing.

The government-funded National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care were a watershed moment for establishing benchmarks. Read more about the Guidelines here.



First board and working groups

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Inaugural Board: (Elected by Sponsors 5 February 2013)

Chairman: Ross Low (NSW/ACT)

Deputy-Chair: Sara Blunt (SA)

Secretary: Susan Sullivan (ACT)

Treasurer: John Ireland (NSW)

Board Members:

Colleen Geyer (QLD)

John Gilmour (QLD)

Ilsa Hampton (VIC)

Dean Phelan (QLD)

Elizabeth MacKinlay (CAPS rep)


Steering Committee:

Establishing PASCOP from March 2012 to February 2013

Geoffrey Hunter (Convenor) CAPS Board

Liz MacKinlay CAPS Director

John Ireland (NSW)

Susan Sullivan (ACT)

Sara Blunt (SA)


Task Group:

Planning PASCOP from 2010 -12

Geoffrey Hunter (Chair)

Elizabeth MacKinlay CAPS Director

Eric McDonald CAPS Board

Kevin Vassarotti CAPS Board

Loretta Zamprogno CAPS Board

Judith Marston (Secretary)

John Ireland (NSW)

Jim Spiker (SA)

Joseph Abad (NSW)

Rod MacDonald (Qld)


Initial Steering Committee Members 2008-2010

Ilsa Hampton (Convenor), Elizabeth Mackinlay, Tony Coles, Jim Spiker, Judy Marston

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