Good morning everyone. I actually slept through the night! I was jumping up and down for joy because I fell asleep and stayed asleep. The cold I’ve been fighting also seems to have made a retreat.
After breakfast, we went off to listen to the welcome and official opening of the conference by Dr. Liz Gwyther and Dr. Emmanuel Luyirika. The conference sessions started at 9 a.m. and we mainly spread out and went to different sessions. The tracks that were available spanned from palliative care to crossing borders with health systems and showcasing the impact of our work. I sat in sessions from all of those areas, but the one session that struck a chord with me was showcasing the impact of our work.
The morning sessions ended at 1 p.m. and we all came back together for lunch. Of course, we traded stories and laughed like crazy. I think perhaps some of the other attendees were probably saying "those Americans are at it again."
After the conference, we met back up for dinner around 6:30 p.m. In front of the dinner hall, the traditional African musicians were playing music and dancing. Everyone in our group jumped in but as you can imagine, Katie and Vonceil were at the top of the list for showcasing their dance skills. It was a sight to see. Pam, Tangela and I watched, recorded and laughed as those two enjoyed the experience.
Although dinner was supposed to start at 7 p.m., we didn't actually eat until around 9 p.m. I was beyond tired at that point and when they finally opened up the lines for dinner, I ate and ran off to my room for a hot shower and much needed sleep. Tangela and Vonceil left shortly after I did, but Katie and Pam stayed and listened to the closing event for the evening. Until tomorrow…
Haven Hospice Chief Information Officer Arthur Clark is one of five Haven Ambassadors chosen to travel to Grahamstown Hospice – our sister hospice organization in South Africa. The experience will provide an opportunity for the Haven Hospice Ambassadors to learn about end-of-life care in South Africa and to bring insights back to Haven Hospice to share with their colleagues. The selected Haven Ambassadors come from a variety of career paths and will bring a wide-range of experiences to the exchange experience: Pam Giebeig, hospice nurse; Tangela Wilson, respiratory therapist; and Vonceil Levine and Katie Alphahando, clinical social workers.