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Faculty Members Receive RBC Nurses for Kids Community Development Program Operating Grant

(L to R) Dr. Lorraine Holtslander, Dr. Christopher Mpofu, Dr. Heather Hodgson-Viden, Dr. Jill Bally, Marcelline Zimmer and Nicole Smith (Research Coordinator/Master of Nursing Student). Missing: Meredith Wild.
(L to R) Dr. Lorraine Holtslander, Dr. Christopher Mpofu,
Dr. Heather Hodgson-Viden, Dr. Jill Bally, Marcelline Zimmer
and Nicole Smith (Research Coordinator/Master of
Nursing Student). Missing: Meredith Wild.

There are a number of Canadian children living with serious illness who suffer from life-threatening challenges over the course of their infection or disease. The impact on children with life limiting and life threatening illnesses and their families is important. Congratulations to College of Nursing Faculty Dr. Jill Bally and Dr. Lorraine Holtslander who were announced recently as the recipients of the RBC Nurses for Kids Community Development Program Operating Grant for work on their project titled Developing a Psychosocial Support Intervention for Parents of Children with a Life Limiting or Life Threatening Illness Living in Saskatchewan: A Community Based Approach.

The purpose of this project is to develop a hope intervention to improve the level of support parents with children in palliative care receive. Research has demonstrated that hope is vitally important to the family of ill children because it helps them manage the illness. Nurses play an important role in supporting parents' hope. However, there is a lack of evidence to support this aspect of complete care. At the end of this project, this research will provide a new and very important first step in supporting the psychosocial and bereavement needs of parents with children in palliative care.

"Currently, there is limited support for parents and children who are affected by acute and chronic illness in Saskatchewan," says Dr. Bally. "Building on our previous research about parental hope, this project will be an excellent opportunity to bring together nurses, parents, physicians and an important community partner in developing more comprehensive care for family members. I am so excited and thankful to have obtained the RBC Nurses for Kids Community Development Grant to support our research."

When asked about this project, Dr. Holtslander replied, "I am very eager to begin this groundbreaking work here in Saskatchewan; the funding received from RBC is so much appreciated and will be very important to achieving our goals." She went on to say, "As a palliative home care nurse, I know that caring for families with children who have life-threatening conditions is an immense challenge, especially when supports are not clearly organized or available. By bringing an interdisciplinary team together, including parents, we hope to bring attention to their needs and develop interventions that will support and strengthen these families."

This project is co-investigated by Dr. Heather Hodgson-Viden (College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan), Dr. Christopher Mpofu (Saskatchewan Cancer Agency, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan), Meredith Wild (Palliative Care Services, Saskatoon Health Region) and Marcelline Zimmer (Family and Volunteer Services, Ronald McDonald House Saskatchewan).

Congratulations once again to everyone involved in this project.