On receiving the BC Schizophrenia Society Champion Award

Dear Dave, BCSS Board Members (past and present), and all who share the mission of BCSS:

When I was awarded the BCSS Champion Award, I felt like I had just received an Oscar from the Academy.

However, unlike some actors in the Academy, it has taken me 25 years to achieve this high honour. But that makes it even more special.

I have a very long list of people to thank, without whom I would not have received this award. The first goes back to 1959. As a student and nurse aid at a large Riverview-like hospital in New Zealand, I met a young man with schizophrenia. We often spoke for hours and through him I learned about the pain that people with this illness can go through. Thus sparking my enduring interest in schizophrenia and advocating for excellent treatment for people living with schizophrenia and their families.

Here, I want to thank all the BCSS board members and staff I have worked with over the years to advance the cause of helping families help their loved ones.

In particular, our Board President Dave, the current BCSS Board of Directors, and the Policy Committee deserve meritorious mention. Fred Dawe, a member of both, and I had the privilege of serving as President of the Schizophrenia Society of Canada. Thanks Fred.

The script writer and editing award is shared this year between Susan Inman and Jane Duval. Susan’s extensive writing and experience as a teacher, along with the writing and editing expertise of Jane, BCSS’ former executive director (gained through working with the CBC and BCSS) were critical to improving my drafts.

I would also like to recognize the great resource we have in the BCSS Medical Advisory Board. Here, I thank Dr. Randall White – especially for his presentation on COVID-19 at our recent Annual General Meeting and for being a champion for cognitive remediation.

Finally I would like to thank Faydra Aldridge and the staff throughout the province for their skill and dedication which are all important for advancing our cause and me receiving this important award.

Thank you so much.

1 October, 2020