She began her career working on the Pediatric Unit at Grand River Hospital in Kitchener, and a few years later, tandem working on the Pediatric Psychology Unit, better known as C.A.I.P. Both of these positions provided the opportunities to deal with the physical and psychological dynamics of both patient and family. She quickly learned that the body and mind both have a profound influence on each other and, in turn, those around them.
A few years later, she took a full time position on the Child and Adolescent In Patient Program Unit (C.A.I.P.) and Adult Psychiatric Unit, focusing her energy on the psychological aspect of this care, while training in Anger Management, Eating Disorders, Drug Awareness and Family-Centered Care in family systems. These afforded her the time and experience to really see lives from another perspective, allowing for a more diverse understanding of families and how one member can strongly affect the entire functionality of the family unit. Many times entire families needed assistance, not just the one currently under her care.
By early 2000, Peggy had moved positions to the Childbirth Unit while expecting her first child. It was a welcome change, even though she thoroughly enjoyed her role on the psychology units, it was nice to see things from another perspective during this time. The knowledge gained previously, ended up an asset in this area as well, as she came in contact with a number of patients dealing with similar situations. The mind, situations we find ourselves in and how we handle them crosses all boarders.
In 2006 she got a day position on the Medical Day Unit that was her first full time exposure to the elderly and how families and extended families interacted. During her year here, she fell in love with the elderly and how special their needs were. They were often similar in nature to Pediatrics, and to the new moms in their new experience. It was noted that often the elderly patients were left attended by a hired individual and not family. This led to the questions of why? Many times these elderly were from a nursing home, other hospital or similar area and having some form of dementia. When asked why, “no family” or challenges to understand or manage their loved one’s dementia was often the reason. This opened a whole other area of interest for her and in 2007 she accepted a position of Nurse Manager at Lanark Heights Long Term Care Facility in Kitchener where she could expand her support and knowledge in these areas to greater depth.
This was a whole new realm and a whole new opportunity to have some affect on how the elderly were supported. It was an opportunity to learn, observe and impact the care of those with dementia. Here she learned not only the needs, but every aspect of the experience from, generally the elderly being admitted, to the end of life needs as well. It was this journey that hooked her into staying in this line of work. It was a place that she could have the greatest influence and appear to have the highest impact on the resident and family as a whole. At Lanark, she was in charge of the nursing staff as a whole, preceptor to nursing students, PSW’s, plus doctors’ rounds for all 5 units and all emergency situations that could and would arise. At this facility there was also a locked unit for those who had advanced to the stage of wandering and idealizations including but not limited to hallucinations. Often it would be here that the residents with Pick’s, Frontal Lobe, Parkinson’s etc. would need to be.
For almost 4 years she enjoyed and maintained this role until a family change and an opportunity to purchase a larger home, lead her to Palmerston, Ontario, where she took on the role of Charge Nurse and Educator at a small long-term care and retirement facility. Here she remained for 5 years sharing her knowledge and helping families deal with the ongoing issues of dementia and ageing. It remained fulfilling but she was missing some of the other aspects of caring for this under-managed group. It was here she touched base with Tracey and decided to move to Mississauga to work with We Are The Village Consulting, to assist to educate and train those who she had mentored in a larger capacity, to have a more profound impact on how our elderly could be understood and cared for.
Registered Nurse Diploma with Honors, Conestoga College
Additional Training and Certifications
Gentle Persuasion –
P.I.E.C.E.S. – P.I.E.C.E.S. Consult Group
Palliative Care Program – Through Lanark
Pediatric and Adult Acute and Chronic Pain Program -
Code White training/De-escalation/ Restraints – Grand River
Family Centered Care and Family systems workshop- Grand River
Anger Management – Homewood Guelph
family advocacy & navigation services