Central Gippsland Health will be celebrating a ‘Gathering of Kindness’ on Thursday, November 2 and has invited members of the community to join in activities across its Sale, Maffra and Heyfield sites.

The event was created in 2015 by Mary Freer and Dr Catherine Crock of the Hush Foundation, after identifying the direct correlation between organisational negativity and staff wellbeing and effectiveness.

CGH Chief Executive, Dr Frank Evans, said the Gathering of Kindness aimed to redress this by building, nurturing and instilling a culture of kindness throughout the healthcare system.

He said the inaugural Hush Foundation’s Gathering of Kindness in 2016 inspired CGH staff to plan their own event this year.

“That first event asked 100 participants – actors, healthcare clinicians, artists, musicians and innovators – to imagine that kindness, trust and respect were the fundamental components of the healthcare system, and that bullying was unacceptable,” he said. “Collectively they proposed a better way forward.

“The overwhelming success of the inaugural GOK has inspired us to expand it in 2017 into multiple venues and to broaden participation.”

The key theme this year is ‘The Power of Kindness/Continuing the Conversation’. The five-day Gathering of Kindness will provide participants with the opportunity to share their ideas, their work and their projects.

Redesign Project Officer/Undergraduate Coordinator at CGH, Sue Martin, encouraged the community to join with CGH staff in this “important event”.

“The aim of the event is to better understand how we can improve our healthcare environment for all stakeholders, including staff and consumers,” she said. “Everyone has a role to play – kindness starts within all of us.”

The main day on November 2 will run at CGH from 7am to 5pm across all campuses. Kindness Boards will be located around Sale Hospital, Maffra Hospital, Stretton Park and Laurina Lodge in Heyfield for people to write “kindness” notes. Gathering of Kindness badges will be available as well as t-shirts to purchase.

A launch will be held at 11.30am across all campuses which will be followed by a lunch and open forum.

A play about kindness in health care called ‘What Matters’ will be screened in the lecture hall at the Sale campus at noon on November 10 by the Hush Foundation. Bookings are essential. For more details contact Sue Martin on 5143 8578 or email sue.martin@cghs.com.au

Please note: the media is welcome to attend the ‘Gathering of Kindness’. Just contact Lynne Smith on 0437 918234 or email lsmith@wordwisecommunications.com.au





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