A professional development program designed to equip aged care organisations with integrated spiritual care for older people was officially launched on Wednesday 8 August at Churches of Christ in Queensland Head Office at Kenmore at 12.30pm.

The Spirituality in Aged Care Professional Development Program aims to help the integration of spiritual care in aged care by embedding strategies into the everyday practice of staff, and by mentoring a person-centred care model that gives staff the confidence to support the spiritual needs of each resident and client.

Meaningful Ageing Australia CEO Ilsa Hampton said the program supported service providers who will be expected to understand and respond to the spiritual needs of  older people under the new Single Aged Care Quality Standards currently before Parliament. “The predominant theme of spiritualty is meaning and purpose in life, it is not an easy topic for many people, regardless of their experience or background, to understand or address,” Ms Hampton said.

“While spirituality in aged care is not a new concept, it is one to be explored and embedded into aged care services if we are to truly support the wellbeing of seniors as they age.

“This is a practical program that provides leaders with the tools they need to help educate and support their staff to deliver relevant, appropriate basic spiritual care for individuals no matter their stage of life or background”.

The program, which contains a range of educational resources, has been updated following a successful trial by Spiritual Health Victoria with more than 100 aged care staff in multiple locations in 2013 and now provides improved ways for organisations to gently engage their staff in understanding contemporary spirituality and spiritual care. Aged care industry leaders and managers have been invited to attend this event.

Further details about the program are available here:

Spirituality in Aged Care Professional Development Program