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  Stimulating a New Discussion about Caregiving
URGENT WHISPERS: Care of the Dying   LLX Press; Eugene, OR;
152pp; $14.95; ISBN 0971710708 paper; ISBN 0971710759 Spiral Coil
Distributed by Baker & Taylor; DeVorss; Cokesbury Books; or direct from LLX Press

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  • A Critical Helping Hand for Caregivers

    Why this book?

  • Simple yet powerful, URGENT WHISPERS: Care of the Dying by Jerral Sapienza is an essential guide to getting focused in caregiving. Designed for novice and experienced caregivers alike, it empowers one to feel supported, informed and immediately useful in the process of helping out at the end of life. Can be used as a personal guide and mentor, or in group training settings to help inspire confidence and stimulate discussion while opening to learn.     With index, exercises and reflections, a poetic, prayerful, information-packed little guide: URGENT WHISPERS is truly a "Map and Compass for the Soul."

    The heart of the book is layed out as a two-page spread, the left side with exercises, questions, list fill-ins and reflection opportunity by and for the caregiver about the process. The right side of the page starts with a brief and often incisive "whisper" at the top of the page, representing a quiet yet important subtle message about the loved one's needs which the caregiver may or may not have sensed in the course of the process, followed by a discussion of how it may be most relevant to caregiver, loved one and the overall process.

    For those apprehensive about the subject or fearful about getting involved, URGENT WHISPERS delicately draws them in, offering an excellent action guide to richer living. The chronological arrangement of the "whispers" moves the reader gradually through a growth and examination process, covering roles and attitudes towards usefulness, priorities, love and family, friendship, spiritual values, accomplishments, celebrations and a whole host of other topics, all while learning more about Self and Others.   With exercises and index, it informs, inspires and documents a reader's journey all along the way.

    Sapienza is a fascinating blend of artist and keen social scientist who writes from personal experience as long-time hospice volunteer and death researcher. Rich and acessible, this jewel of a resource guide is a caregiver's delight.   Available as paperback or spiral coil edition, there's a reason why URGENT WHISPERS is popping up all across the country in book discussion groups, community reading programs, church fellowships and other places which typically have little to do with hospice or caregiving. This is a remarkable little book.

    Who is the Audience?

  • Caregivers: Friends and Family of a Loved One at the End of Life
  • Agency Volunteer and Paid Caregivers
  • First-Time and Experienced Caregivers alike
  • Churches and Spiritual Support Communities
  • High School and College Family Living / Lifespan Psychology courses
  • Hospice information resources and training programs
  • Corporate Employee Relations depts for Aging Parent / Family Caregiver support
  • Hospital Clergy and Pastoral Care staff
  • ICU and ER Medical and Nursing staff for training and patient resource
  • Libraries
  • Medical and Nursing Education Programs for End of Life Awareness
  • Oncology, Thanatology, & Gerontology patient referral materials
  • Palliative Care physicians, agencies and staff
  • Psychologist & Grief Counseling Office patient resources
  • University / Community Ed courses in Death Education, Gerontology, Conscious Dying
  • University Volunteer Programs, helping introduce young people to Service Work
  • General Readership for Self-Help and personal growth awareness

    Training Materials for URGENT WHISPERS Courses

    To assist Hospices, Schools, Libraries, Churches, Nursing Teams or other agencies easily setup and conduct Caregiver Training and Discussion Groups using the book, LLX Press provides Training Materials for free download.     Below are the Instructor and Student 20-page Guides as well as a very useful Course Evaluation Form for followup (all in PDF format) for a 14-hour (2 hrs per week x 7 wks) Discussion Class / Training Course on materials presented in URGENT WHISPERS.: (Other training materials are also available, at http://WWW.LLX.COM/Train/.)

  • Facilitator's Guide:   http://WWW.LLX.COM/UW/Train/7WkClassGuide.pdf
  • Student's Guide:       http://WWW.LLX.COM/UW/Train/7WkStudentGuide.pdf
  • Course Eval Form: http://WWW.LLX.COM/UW/Train/UWCoEval.pdf 


    About the Author

          Jerral's earliest memories are as a toddler in and out of doctor offices and hospitals for years due to childhood epilepsy, his life imbued with a sensitivity for compassion and caregiving, knowing very well what it was to be taken care of. Thankfully by his teen years, Jerral's neurological disorders remitted and his life settled into a stable, if active one. Dubbed by his pediatrician a "Cadillac engine in a Model T frame", he had an insatiable interest in all things around him, propelling his inquisitive mind to his schoolwork, several inventions, a fascination with forensics and handwriting analysis, a penchant for interpersonal communication and a knack for foreign languages.

          Jerral's University studies wove for nearly a decade in and out of many different disciplines, including Engineering, Computers, Poetry & Writing, Psychology, Counseling Business Law, several Foreign Languages and even Music and Ballet before finally setting its career arc into mostly Teaching, Engineering and Business.

          Jerral's first encounter with caregiving was as a part of an elective research project in a Counseling Psychology course at Oregon State University. Quite an intense experience at the time, it didn't fit neatly into any of his Engineering or Education career paths he could then discern, but inspired an interest in caregiving and death and dying research for many years to come. When he graduated with a Teaching Certificate he taught English, Writing, Drama, Computers and Foreign Languages for a few years before starting a High Tech firm in 1987.

          During the years of the AIDS crisis of the 1980's and 1990's, Jerral often took the time to help out at the bedside of young people dying of AIDS and several friends and family lost to cancer, ALS, Alzheimer's and other degenerative diseases.     Certainly these times offered many opportunities to Learn, Grow and Share in the understanding of what to do, what to say, how to be at the bedside of someone who lay dying. It was the lessons and joys of these times which formed the essence of URGENT WHISPERS: Care of the Dying.   His background in art, literature and prayer as well as conscious dying and end-of-life care provide a foundation for a masterfully inspiring and useful book of peace and support.

          Colleagues working with Jerral over the years have been fascinated by his passion in this work and the flow with peaceful joy and presence in the moment as he participates in the vigil process of a dying friend or loved one.   Hospice Volunteers used to ask "Where did you learn these things?" and "How did you know to do that?" and "How can I learn more about all of this?" to which perhaps now the best answer is URGENT WHISPERS: Care of the Dying, and its invitation to learning, growing, sharing in the moment during those Teaching Times of Trauma. As Sapienza says in the introduction to the book:

    "I encourage you to look back in life and see what messages have come to you in some of the 'Teacher Times' disguised as trauma. Exploring this deep mine of rich resources available to us during our times of yearning, we are often pleasantly surprised by gifts there if we remain receptive."
          In addition to his writing, Sapienza is also a Chaplain and active in end-of-life education, support and advocacy. In his career and professional history, he was a Business Consultant and IT Systems Engineer for many years during which time he volunteered as a caregiver.
        He developed a unique style of Handwriting Analysis which he teaches and applies personally and professionally. Upcoming books include a book on personal grief coping, URGENT WHISPERS II: The Way Back, and an introduction to handwriting analysis, Handwriting Analysis: JAQS Style, and a collection of poetry.

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  • Wholesale Distribution by DeVorss, Baker & Taylor, LLX Press and other outlets.
  • Various Retail, Church, Hospice and Library outlets across the US
    [ Why this Book? ]   [ Audience ]   [ Author ]   [ Order ]   [ Training Resources ]  
    [ Reviews]   [ Find a Copy ]   [Buy at]  [ Contact ]  

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