Had a very satisfying experience this morning presenting to the Alberta Continuing Care Association annual conference.
Had to give my presentation twice which was taxing, but fulfilling. There is still a place for telling the stories of advocating for our Elders.
Very kind audience, many of whom approached me afterwards to tell me that they had bought or planned to buy my book. I was very encouraged by the broad range of responses and their affirmation.
It was gratifying to fulfill the Foundation commitment to “inspire peers”!
I am excited and thrilled to share that my book is finally published!
Throughout this project I have been honoured to have the support of family and friends and I am especially grateful for the efforts of my son Jim, who made it happen!
In the coming weeks and months we will be promoting the book and The Christie Gardens Foundation — in the meantime I would very much appreciate if you could buy, submit a review, and share with your networks.
A portion of the proceeds goes to the Foundation, and we would love for this to be a great success!
I wanted to share that I am speaking at the iQ 2019 conference later this week, in Red Deer Alberta. This year’s conference is titled “Catch the Wave!” — their goal is to inspire and motivate attendees.
Naturally, I’m a perfect fit!
I was selected to speak on my favourite subject: changing the culture of care for our most vulnerable citizens.
While there I will be promoting my book “Joyful Journey: An Adventure in Elder Care” and The Christie Gardens Foundation, wish me luck!
“I have known Grace for many years, both from a professional relationship and a more personal one when we both served on the board of OLTCA in a variety of capacities. Grace’s authorship of her book “Joyful Journey” is just another example of her commitment to driving quality of life improvement for the most vulnerable people in our society, in a team environment.
The book is full of real life experiences in the life of the leader, Grace, as she traces her steps through building a quality and life long career path in serving elders. Her passion for continuous improvement and leadership never waned, despite the challenging environment and difficulties that Grace encountered.
The book demonstrates her staying power and drive, never saying “it can’t be done”. This and all the other lessons that she articulates so well, should be learned by every healthcare worker engaged in the active care of elders.
I have nothing but admiration for Grace’s ability — be it in management, leadership, or advocating to Government for improvements in the lives of elders.
Nothing exemplifies this more than when Grace writes about her last effort at creating better living and quality of life improvements late in her career at Christie Gardens.
Grace you should be teaching these lessons to students studying healthcare as these real life experiences cannot be taught by learning theories.”
Consulting CEO, Natural Care
Former President/CEO Centric Health
Former President Leisureworld
Former President OLTCA
“The jury is still out on what is the best model to use in accommodating frail older adults. Extending beyond thirty years, Grace Sweatman was CEO at Christie Gardens, home to over 400 older adults in Toronto.
Through a series of well-told stories, her Joyful Journey documents that she was the sales person, taking risks, and encouraging people. She nurtured a model vision for her organization, charting new growth, eying the horizon and challenging the status quo. Her long-term thinking saw new opportunities, and created new roads. Year after year she motivated her colleagues, broke rules, fostered ideas, and inspired trust.
Throughout her Joyful Journey, she voted with her heart and did the right thing, not satisfied with just doing things right. Joyful Journey is inspirational and instructive to anyone interested in how communities should respond to the challenges of ensuring quality of life of their frail older adults.”
Larry W. Chambers
PhD, FACE, FFPH (Hon) (UK), FCAHS
Research Director, Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine,
Niagara Regional Campus
Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact
Faculty of Health Sciences
“While teaching an Environmental Design course as part of the Gerontology program at Ryerson in the early 80’s, a bright eager student indicated her interest in someday becoming the director of the best seniors’ residence in Ontario.
It was a great pleasure to read Joyful Journey: An Adventure in Eldercare and all of Grace Sweatman’s stories and her interesting journey as she pursued a successful career and ultimately achieved her early goal.
Best of all my husband and I feel privileged to be residents at Christie Gardens and enjoy all it has to offer – and to have reconnected with Grace.”
“Grace Sweatman sees possibilities where others see problems. She built and sold life lease units, enhanced our Courtyard, led us away from Ministry restrictions, and built neighbourhoods with empowered staff and person-centred care. Reading each of her blogs reminded me of so many experiences during those years and provided background information of the time preceding. I’m excited this important story is now going to reach a wider audience, as it will provide a foundation for the winds of change ahead in eldercare.”
Ann Peachman Stewart