Caregivers Urged to Look After Themselves Too!
The Catholic Health Care Association (CATHCA) held its Gauteng provincial conference, with staff and members coming together to meet other care workers and share their experiences and challenges.
CATHCA, a non-profit organisation, is the associate body for health of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference.
The Gauteng meeting, held at the Good Shepherd Retreat Centre in Hartbeespoort, was attended by 55 members from 22 organisations in Gauteng, Mpumalanga and North West, as well as two CATHCA board members and eight staff.
Among the organisations present were Afra Community Development, Asiphilenikhahle Home-based Care, Bushbuckridge Home-based Care, Fr Michael D’Annucci Centre, Holy Cross Home, Inkanyezi HIV/Aids Organisation, Lehlohonolo Community Welfare, Lindanisizwe Home-based Care, Lufuno Home-based Care, Mercy Clinic Kopano Lerato, Mofumahadi Wa Tshepo, Nazareth House Johannesburg, and Phumula Old Age Home.
CATHCA director Thomas Joseph said the overwhelming opinion of participants was that the conference was a great success and that all had gained significantly.
“Guest speakers gave us a wealth of information on various topics, all of which the delegates found most interesting and pertinent, and which they felt could be applied to their own situations,” he said.
Topics discussed at the conference were:
- Key Issues Affecting Children: Sinah Moruane, UNICEF SA
- Child Rights: Boitumelo Nkomo, Kopano Lerato OVC
- Issues Affecting Children: Pippa Jarvis, TLC Children’s Home
- Key Issues Affecting the Elderly: Albina Kekana, CATHCA board
- Issues Affecting the Elderly: Fr Paul Tatu, SACBC.
A panel discussion, “Care for the Care Giver”, was presented by Bonakele Khamnule of Lufuno Home-based Care, Neo Pule of Lehlohonolo, and Sethu Sandoof Shalom Old Age Centre, and chaired by Bongi Mthembu of CATHCA.
“From evaluation forms submitted by members, the majority stated that the most inspiring presentation was by Pippa Jarvis,” Mr Joseph said. “Her stories of how TLC takes care of orphans touched many people deeply.” He added that Albina Kekana’s presentation, on the elderly, was also popular.
The three panel members encouraged caregivers to take care of themselves to be able to continue to look after others.