A scholarship that supports the vital role palliative care nurses play in the community is being celebrated by leading in-home care specialist Silverchain during National Palliative Care Week (21-27 May 2023).

The Jennifer Gordon Memorial Scholarship was set up with the generous support of the Gordon family, led by Carol Gordon, who lost her sister Jennifer to pancreatic cancer at just 51 years of age.

“The Silverchain nursing team did such a fantastic job of looking after Jennifer at home in her final months,” Mrs Gordon said.

“After she passed away, the family and a good friend of Jennifer’s, Trevor Ward, donated some money to set up a scholarship fund for palliative care nurses to further their knowledge and training, as a way of saying thank you and acknowledging the great job that they do.”

Silverchain’s Executive Director, Western Australia Renae Lavell, said “Silverchain deeply appreciates the generosity of the Gordon family, and the Jennifer Gordon Memorial Scholarship is a wonderful way of supporting our specialist palliative team members”.

“Our team works diligently to enable our clients to maximise their time with loved ones and minimise the physical and emotional stress experienced by clients and those close to them,” Ms Lavell said.

“We are incredibly grateful to the Gordon family for investing in our clinical teams in honour of Jennifer.

“The scholarship recipient will receive education and training that they will be able to share with their team, and build on our culture to deliver best care to every client, every time.”

Silverchain’s inter-disciplinary palliative care service has provided Western Australians access to quality palliative care in the comfort and safety of their own homes for more than 40 years. The service has allowed more people in WA to die in their home, as their preferred place, compared to any other state or territory.

“The people in palliative care do such amazing work – they are amazing people – and I really want to invest in their learning and development,” Mrs Gordon said.

“Jennifer lived a very interesting life – she worked in marketing and promotions but had a special gift for giving back. One of her roles was at the (Princess Margaret) Children’s Hospital, and she just loved working with the kids. This is our way of giving back and honouring her life.”