My guest on this podcast has lived most of her adult life in a small country town. But it wasn’t the life her parents had mapped out for her.
She was born into a prominent, conservative, Irish-Italian Catholic family in Melbourne. As the only daughter, she was expected to live close to her family – and, if a career outside family life was in prospect, it would ideally be in teaching or nursing.
This is the story of how Julianne ended up a long way from home: changed her career in midlife and became a powerful advocate, social worker and researcher in the field of palliative care.
She recounts how she came to establish a foundation to research, develop and fund rural end of life projects: Projects that truly delivered client and carer orientated, psychosocial, services.
As social workers we know that end of life care is much more than adequate pain relief, or when to withdraw active treatment- and it is also much more than a bucket list. It’s about meaning, values, and what it is to live a good life.
And so Julianne and I talk about the direction of palliative care research, the meaning of hope, professional politics and professional power in health care.
She describes her efforts to map out the best wholistic models of care and her continuing struggles against narrow more medicalised models of care.
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Julianne never ceases to expand my mind and my heart. Her reflections in this podcast are no exception. Her personal and professional evolution – and the way she has integrated all the elements of her self – is a wonderful gift to social work and palliative care. She is a role model, an inspiration and it truly is an honour to also call her a friend. I am astounded at how much she has achieved in her life and navigated. I am often left breathless with her energy and capacity. It’s as if she is several people in the one person! Thank you Julianne and Vittorio for this thoughtful and relevant conversation.