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Knowledge Exchange

2018 Ageing and Spirituality Conference

A professional development conference relevant to all who work in the field of caring for older people, to be held on Thursday, 1 November 2018, Selwyn Village theatre, 43 Target St, Point Chevalier, Auckland.

See below for the speaker line-up and their presentations on a range of subjects relating to spiritual leadership in aged care.

Dr Gary Cheung

Dr Gary Cheung is an academic old age psychiatrist. He currently holds a joint appointment between Auckland District Health Board as a community old age psychiatrist and the University of Auckland as a Senior Lecturer. His research interests are centered on improving health outcomes and quality of life and care of older people living in aged residential care and community.

Is there a link between loneliness and suicide in late life?

Suicide is a major public health concern in many parts of the world. There is a clear relationship globally between increased suicide rates and age; and in New Zealand men aged 85 and above have one of the highest suicide rates among all age groups. The Interpersonal Theory of Suicide proposes that a lack of social connectedness and perceived burdensomeness can lead to suicidal thoughts. Loneliness is now recognised as a risk factor for premature mortality, poor psychological and physical wellbeing. This presentation will examine the New Zealand and international literature on late life suicide and its association with loneliness; and describe the treatment models used to address loneliness and enhance social connectedness.

Hanya Gallagher

Hanya Gallagher lives in Auckland and is a Zen Priest with the Auckland Zen Centre.

Hanya was brought up as an Irish Catholic in Christchurch. She left the church in her late teens to explore eastern meditation. She married in her early 20’s and has an adult son who lives in chch.
On separating from her husband, Hanya went to live in Auckland in 2008. She became more committed to her zen practice and started full time training with the Auckland Zen Centre in 2011. This eventually resulted in her becoming a Buddhist priest in Feb 2016.

Hanya spent most of her working life in the field of exercise therapy as a tool to wellness. She currently teaches a mindful exercise programme at the Auckland Zen Centre which uses her training in yoga, pilates and Tai Ch

Lucy Nguyen

Lucy Nguyen - Ageing and Spirituality Conference 2017

Lucy, a Chaplain with the Selwyn Foundation since 2016 currently works at Selwyn Heights, Hillsborough and Selwyn House/Hansen Close, Birkenhead. Since ordination as an Anglican Priest in the Auckland Diocese in 2003 Lucy has worked as a parish vicar and as a public hospital chaplain. Previously Lucy has worked in the field of community mental health administration, the hospitality industry and Southeast Asian refugee resettlement.  Originating from the east coast of America, Lucy has a BA in Sociology from the University of Connecticut and a BTheo from Auckland University. She moved to New Zealand 30+ years ago. 

Imam Mohammad saleh Almodarresi

Imam Mohammad saleh Almodarresi is the resident Imam for a charity centre based in West Auckland. Before arriving in New Zealand in 2003 Mr Almodarresi worked with numerous institutions throughout the Middle East. Since arriving in New Zealand Mr Almodarresi has been involved with several charities and has written various books, including his most notable work on desperation, from a religious point of view. Mr Almodarresi is also an esteemed lecturer, giving lectures in several languages besides English and Arabic. 

The Reverend Dr Frank Smith

Le Vaotogo Frank Smith is a medical graduate who received his PhD (theology) from the University of Auckland with a thesis titled The Johannine Jesus from a Samoan Perspective: Toward and Intercultural Reading of the Fourth Gospel (2009). In his medical career, he was Director of Clinical Services (1994-99), Consultant Opthalmologist (1990-99) to the Ministry of Health of Samoa and had Short-Term Consultancies to WHO on Health and Environment in Western Pacific, (1994) and to UNESCAP on Education, Social and Economic Status of Persons with Disability in Samoa, (1987). He is currently Lecturer and Dean of Tikanga Pasifika at The College of St John the Evangelist, Auckland. As Dean, he provides theological education, training in ministry formation, pastoral and managerial leadership for students in Tikanga Pasifika. His interests are in intersections of Pasifika spirituality with sociocultural-anthropology and theological perspectives.

Teena Abbey

Teena Abbey is a principal Policy Analyst in Community Policy at Auckland Council . She has a long history in local and central government across the fields of health based social work, community development, community policy and planning, immigration, workforce development and education. Teena is currently working on a project called Investing in Aucklanders, which aims to find out how Auckland could become a friendlier and more inclusive city where everyone belongs and can participate (which includes seniors).
I will likely tag team the presentation with one of my colleagues on the work we are starting on Auckland signing up to the WHO Age Friendly City Network.

Bishop Ross Bay, Anglican Bishop of Auckland

Bishop Ross was born and grew up in Papatoetoe in South Auckland. His early working life was with the Bank of New Zealand where he realised that he wasn't so interested in banking as much as the interaction with people.  He was ordained as an Anglican minister in 1989, and has served in various parishes in the Auckland Diocese. He was Dean of Holy Trinity Cathedral before his appointment as Bishop in 2010.

Bishop Ross is very committed to the value of healthy communities, and believes that this is characteristic of the Church at its best. He will explore the basis of Christian community from the perspectives of Scripture, the Christian tradition, and his own experience. His proposal is that a healthy spirituality is an essential component of creating a healthy community. 

Dwight Whitney

Dwight Whitney tells stories. He’s a writer, editor and contributor to a wide range of national and international publications and platforms - particularly magazines.

He has been a brand communication adviser to a host of SMEs through to global entities.

He has written, or co-authored, a number of books including Reality is Crazy (a study of entrepreneurship).

Dwight has recently teamed up with Canadian-born, Japan-domiciled writer; Julian Macfarlane as a contributor to his latest ebook - Ageing Young: You’re NEVER Too Old.

A self-help work with a difference. Penned by ‘Baby Boomers’ for ‘Baby Boomers’ (or older) and those with a vested interest in all aspects of ageing well…or at least the best that can be expected in the circumstances.

The idea of belonging plays a key part in this guide to successful ageing.

We are most grateful for the support of our 2018 sponsors and donors.

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor or donor for the 2018 Selwyn Institute Ageing and Spirituality Conference please contact us at selwyninstitute@selwynfoundation.org.nz