Promoting a Death-Positive Culture

Tracey Thompson with worship associate Victoria Barr – 

Tracey is a trained death doula from the Institute of Traditional Medicine. She desires to create and hold space for conversations about death and dying, to reduce stigma and hopes that this will lead to a more death-positive culture. This supports all of us to have valuable dialogues in our homes and communities. 

Tracey will discuss the varied roles of death doulas, how to start a personal conversation, and will share how small rituals keep her and her family connected to the memory of her dad.

Tracey Thompson is the eldest of three daughters of church member Glenys Thompson. 

Tracey moved here in 1992 to study at the University of Victoria, completing her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Human and Social Development. 

Over the past 30 years, she has worked in a variety of settings including: schools, hospitals, community originations which included a local crisis line. Currently, Tracey works with the Vancouver Island Health Authority as a Regional Harm Reduction Coordinator in Population and Public Health. This position supports compassionate engagement in the context of the Drug Poisoning Public Health Emergency.

In her personal time, Tracey trained in 2017 as a death doula through the Institute of Traditional Medicine. Her interest and involvement in becoming a death doula parallels her life experience. As friends and sisters were starting families, she was asked to support them during their pregnancy and birth. She felt honoured to discuss with expecting parents their birthing wishes. As requests steadily increased, she paired her experience with education and became a DONA (Doulas of North America) trained birth doula. 

Now she finds herself supporting friends and family in pivotal health transitions, including end of life. Since 2011, Tracey has volunteered with Victoria Hospice and organizes community dialogues with the Victoria Holistic Death Care Community.

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