Canadian Association of Continuing Care Educators Conference

Canadian Association of Continuing Care Educators Conference

Life & Death Matters Post

Annual Conference in Edmonton!

I was thrilled to meet up with educators I met two years ago at the conference in Saskatoon, as well as to meet new educators and nurses providing education in the clinical setting in Alberta.

The theme of this conference was “Promoting a Culture of Safety”.   Meg Soper RN & comedienne  gave the keynote address.  She suggested that to excel at education and leadership we need to: Be good at what we do, be good at communicating, live in balance, and remember humour/perspective.  Her stunning but simple sleeveless black dress, cut high over the shoulders, revealed beautiful big developed biceps… Though I enjoyed her humour… I drooled over the biceps and determined that I should think about thinking about the idea of joining a gym….. then I reached for a chocolate. (

Laura Milligan from NorQuest College provided a half hour presentation about Care of the Ortho Client.  I love to see people like Laura present.  Her knowledge and passion of bones and fractures radiated.  I learned and was inspired.

Stephen Symon from WorkSafe BC motivated me to go to their website and learn more about the latest of resources to promote safety in the workplace.

Marleen McClellan, Chair of the CACCE spoke at the AGM.  Marleen is a beautiful, gentle woman.  Well loved across the country for her leadership and her leadership style.  Marleen presented about the CACCE, focus project, and new website.  Summary:

  • CACCE is an affinity group of Canadian Association of Community Colleges (CACC).  One of their purposes is to promote common core skills and competence nationally of the “unregulated workers”.  Titles for “health care workers” across Canada vary and include: Personal Support Workers, Health Care Aide, Health Care Assistant.
  • CACC received funding from Health Canada, and in collaboration with CACCE,  has completed the development of “The National Educational Standards for personal care providers” This is a major accomplishment! The standards will be launched in Nova Scotia at the end of May.
  • Today at the AGM the new website was launched. See .  This site links with the ACCC website, will link to upcoming conferences, contact information, and documents pertaining to the educational standards.

Exciting research presented by Donalda Farwell Area Director from Bayshore Home Health, Jake Evans and Erin Bampton from NorQuest College spoke about “Enhancing recruitment and retention of diverse HCA’s in a continuing care organization using an intercultural lens”.   Jake talked about sensitivity and intercultural communication as including the mind, heart, and skill. He suggested that intercultural competence, in the context of health care be defined as the ability to deliver effective, understandable and respectful care that is provided in a manner compatible with the patients’ cultural health beliefs and practices and preferred language. (R Anan, I. Lhahiri, Intercultural Comptence in Health Care, 2009)

Jake presented a development model of intercultural sensitivity… suggesting that the level of understanding moves through the following levels of awareness:  Denial, Polarization, Minimization, Acceptance, Adaptation.

I recognized myself in his description of the person who “minimizes” the differences, focusing on the similarities rather than the differences.  He suggests that this works fine until one comes upon the differences and does not know how to navigate through the differences.  Hm..

I could have listened to Jake present theory on cultural awareness and practical strategies for the workplace and health care for hours!  In fact, I wonder if we can get him to come to Victoria for a conference! (Way to go Bayshore and NorQuest!!!)

Ron Schlegehmilch spoke about keeping heart as managers working in health care and education.

And thanks to Judy Van Seggelen from High River Hospital in Okotoks, I was able to stay and hear the final speaker, Shona Hommy-Bugarin from Northern Lakes College.

Shona spoke with heart about the human side of safety. She pulled together the theme of the conference addressing how this applies to the students who are being educated. SHona finished with “Feels like home to me” music and photos!

The highlight was meeting educators from Nova Scotia to British Columbia and north to Whitehorse and Yellowknife!  Thanks so much for the warm welcome!  Until next year!


2 Responses

  1. Hello,

    I was wondering if there is information regarding promoting a culture of safety that I could obtain.(examples powerpoint).


    Darren Gauld

    1. Darren,
      I do not have any resources for you on building a culture of safety. I wonder if putting it out to the larger group of participants at the conference would help you find that. Do you think that connecting with Edna Harrington to send out a note would be worthwhile?

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Courtney Murrell is a PSW who works in hospice palliative care.

When she is not at work, she is spending time with her family, going on hikes or writing. Courtney is a lifelong learner and loves to share her passion for writing as a wellness practice.

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