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My Manifesto: Weaving and Connecting

My Manifesto: Weaving and Connecting


Updated: June 2016

Definition: “A manifesto is a published verbal declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government” (Wickipedia).

My greatest desire is to move family nursing forward and change health care (assessment and intervention) to include the central influence that relationships have in health and healing. I am a registered nurse and a registered psychologist. In addition to a career in academia where I had the privilege of working with and learning from Dr. Lorraine Wright in the Family Nursing Unit, University of Calgary, I helped organize the first International Family Nursing Conference in Calgary in 1988 which Lorraine Wright chaired. I accepted an invitation from SAGE  Publications in 1993 to help develop a peer-reviewed journal for family nursing. In 2005, I helped organize a conversation between family nursing colleagues to begin the work of establishing an international family nursing organization which was formed in 2009. In 2010, I accepted an invitation to help organize a federally funded research conversation about knowledge translation of Family Systems Nursing within an international community of family nursing scholars and practitioners.

My lead roles are a being a WEAVER and a CONNECTOR: who can I connect? how can I help people promote their ideas for family health and healing? how can I create a web of relationships in the family nursing world to speed up connections and collaboration between family nursing colleagues? how can I speed up the spread of family nursing? how can I speed up the spread of family-focused, collaborative health care? 

I see various systems levels where leverage for change is possible. I focus on promoting the work of others in order to move family nursing forward—prospective journal authors, international family nursing colleagues, and family scholars and practitioners outside of nursing who focus on family health and healing. I make it a priority to encourage the scholarship of international colleagues so that their ideas and work can be more accessible in English.  I use as many channels as possible to communicate the urgency about family-focused health care: Journal of Family Nursing; membership in family organizations  such as NCFR, CFHA, AFTA; involvement in the leadership of International Family Nursing Association within the IFNA standing committees related to communication and family nursing practice; my own academic career at the University of Calgary; Janice M. Bell website; Illness Beliefs Model website; and my own social media sites on Twitter, Linkedin, and Pinterest. I do not ask for permission to advance my mission; I am dedicated to serving, leading, and mentoring. My dream is to see family nursing/family-focused care offered as “usual” practice in all health care settings.