As an FCN I make a REAL difference in someone’s life right where I live – you can too!
As a Faith Community Nurse (FCN) in my church I see people holistically, as body, mind and spirit, living in relationships, with God, others and the creation, so the support and care I bring considers all of those aspects. I always begin by listening and offering prayer to people if they want this. I provide many services such as health counselling, education, support with navigating various care systems, I locate resources for people, I provide information and support to people like Kevin so they can make informed decisions and take actions that support the health and wellbeing of their family. God places us into community to “love one another” and in my FCN role I can “love my neighbour” in a meaningful and tangible way. I am part of the health and pastoral care ministry in our church where I bring a health focus that adds a helpful depth and scope to our pastoral care. I use my professional knowledge and skills to support many situations for people of all ages in my church, and I provide an outreach ministry to our local community. The opportunities in the FCN role are vast and life-changing for those we serve. I thoroughly recommend churches consider adding an FCN to their pastoral care ministry.
Holy Covenant Anglican Church in Canberra: an innovative response to our ageing population
“We care for the older people in our community who are housebound and isolated and often fall through the gaps within other services. These gaps include friendship and social support, and spiritual care, especially for those who can’t leave their home. Our group go on outings to places they would like to visit. We have been blessed with a van that has disability access, so taking these people on an outing has become possible. Birthdays are celebrated, and Christmas hampers arrive on their door step in plenty of time for Christmas.
A few years ago, our Holistic Care Nursing expanded and we formed a Memorandum of Understanding with Palliative Care A.C.T., Anglicare, and our local Parish to operate a ‘Day Hospice’… The Covenant Care Day Hospice at Jamison has 14 clients, a qualified Registered Nurse with palliative care experience, an activity coordinator, and 21 volunteers. We operate one day a week, on a Monday, and it’s a wonderful ‘Day with a Difference’ for our clients. The clients are specifically older people living at home with a life-limiting illness and being cared for by a carer, who is usually their spouse, or adult children. The clients are picked up from home by our volunteers, they are brought to the church centre for the day where activities are provided. The person can do some craft, hear a story, chat and share friendship. A three course meal is provided by our local Southern Cross Club. Having this meal means the carer doesn’t have to cook a meal at home on that day and they can have a genuine respite day because their family member is with us for the whole day, so they can do and go wherever they wish. We return the clients to their homes around 4pm. Included in the day is the option of a prayer service in the chapel which many attend.
Colleen the teapot
People at Uniting Communities in SA wanted to help older people stay safely within their own
homes. Their research found older people were concerned about two key things—taking their
wheelie bin out for collection each week, and having a neighbour close by who could look in on them
a couple of times a week just in case something untoward happened. The team at Uniting
Communities set about looking for creative ways to address these issues and connect their
community and ‘Colleen’ was born!
Click here to read more about how Colleen the teapot is an example of primary health care and community engagement that builds the capacity of local communities making them healthier and safer for all.