Grief and loss resulting from adverse events in life, including the current pandemic, can have multiple effects and impact mental health. When our worldview and sense of safety are altered existential and spiritual concerns often arise. Self-compassion and spirituality can play a key role in resilience and posttraumatic growth if facilitated. This presentation will highlight these important aspects and offer participants an understanding of these important factors that are evident in our current global reality of COVID-19.
Dr. Heather M. Boynton is an Assistant Professor in Social Work at the University of Calgary, and a Registered Social Worker who has worked in mental health for over 30 years as a Child and Family Therapist, Mental Health Consultant, and a Manager in Adult Services. She is Adjunct Professor at Lakehead University in Kinesiology, Faculty at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, and has been a sessional lecturer at Dalhousie University. She teaches with a strong focus on spirituality, trauma, grief and loss, cultural competence and humility, and interprofessional education and collaboration. Her research interests include spirituality, trauma, grief and loss, posttraumatic growth, children’s mental health, integrative and holistic practices, and interprofessional collaboration and education. She is a certified Reiki and Feng Shui Practitioner.