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Living Bridges Winter Newsletter 2015

Humanizing Health Care & Promoting Well-Being for a More Humane and Healthy World
(© Michael Stillwater)

Welcome to the first Living Bridges Newsletter! The New Mexico based 501(c)3 was co-founded by hospice nurses Silvia Talavera and Camille Adair in 2007 with the goal of bridging gaps in end-of-life education and health care sustainability.

Since its inception, Living Bridges has sponsored workshops, conferences, documentary films, arts & hospice programs, and professional support for health care workers.

Sign up here to join the Living Bridges community and stay connected through e-newsletters, event announcements, and free education.

Blessings and happy reading,
Camille Adair

“All things are connected like the blood that unites us. We did not weave the web of life, we are merely a strand in it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.”

- Chief Seattle

Living Bridges Launches Website

In 2014 Camille Adair, Executive Director, wrote an article for the Green Fire Times, Pay It Forward, inviting organizations to engage in an economy of gratitude and generosity. After reading the article, Leslie Staller, a local web designer, gifted Living Bridges with an in-kind donation to create a website,

Leslie Staller, Vision Shift DesignThe Living Bridges community is grateful and inspired by Leslie’s generosity. Two scholarships will be gifted in 2015 on her behalf to continue the flow of gratitude and generosity. You can find Leslie at

Leslie said, "As I walked with my mother on her journey with cancer and dying, I was deeply touched by both the beauty and the challenges present. I was moved to support Living Bridges when I read about its work to reintegrate death and compassion into our health care systems and our daily lives. Working with Camille and the organization has been a delight."

Living Bridges offers programs and events by people dedicated to humanizing health care and advancing positive change. In this time of growing opportunities and challenges, choices related to health, aging, dying and our health care systems have great individual and collective consequences.

If you are interested in becoming a Living Bridges volunteer, please contact Camille Adair for more information.

Thank you for visiting the new Living Bridges website and taking the time to learn more about our efforts!

Upcoming Living Bridges Events

Camille Adair

From the Executive Director of Living Bridges

Camille Adair is the Executive Director for Living Bridges. She is also the founder and program director for Solace Teachings and FairCare. In 2015, Camille will complete the Solace Teachings book to accompany the Solace Teachings documentary series and workbook. The program will seek university accreditation and be available for international distribution.

Camille will also complete an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed white paper of FairCare for implementation in 2016.

Solace Teachings Life Awareness, End-of-Life Education

Level 1 Training Intensive

The Solace Teachings are education and support programs designed to build awareness, fluency and comfort with death and dying. When we are able to face death as a natural part of life, our lives have the potential to be transformed. Ironically, it is death awareness that puts us into a “right relationship” with life.

Many ancient cultures and wisdom traditions experience their relationship to death as a path for spiritual growth and awakening. 

The Solace Teachings is a transformational, holistic program appropriate for hospice and health care professionals, clergy & spiritual leaders, counselors, caregivers and anyone interested in being with dying.

In 2014, two 3-day; level 1 Solace Teachings trainings were offered. The participants were nurses, teachers, volunteers, massage therapists and community members. Nurses received 32 continuing education credits for the training, which fulfills the total requirements needed in New Mexico for two years.

The following is feedback from a nurse who attended the 2014 fall training:
“I have greater inspiration for self-care and strong, quiet leadership as an agent for change in health care administration. Without a doubt, the concept of a new paradigm, where the wellness of the caregiver is not separate from the wellness of the patient, is what drew me to this workshop experience. I love the inclusion, spaciousness and non-dual message of true hope this brings. The importance of expression in whatever its form is something I wish to encourage in my clients as in myself.”
-Rhonda St. Martin, RN, Albuquerque, NM

For those who have completed the level 1 training, our next newsletter will include information on the Solace Teachings Life Awareness, End-of-Life Education, Level 2 Training!

Please sign up here to join the Living Bridges community!

Watch the first trailer for the documentary below, Solace: The Wisdom of the Dying or purchase the Solace movie here.

Song Without Borders

Evoking Healing through Arts and Nature

Michael Stillwater

Michael Stillwater is the Program Director of Song Without Borders, which offers inspirational art projects supporting sustainability and well-being in health care, hospice and general society.

Michael has directed and produced films and music to reflect and support creativity, inner peace and resilience in the face of challenges and life transitions, including Graceful Passages and Care for the Journey.

His most recent documentary film series, In Search of the Great Song, addresses the music inside us all. The first feature-length episode, Shining Night, is a legacy project of the world-renowned composer Morten Lauridsen. Stillwater’s film was called ‘a heartening rarity’ by the Wall Street Journal and received four Best Documentary awards at American film festivals. Musicologist, Nick Strimple wrote that Lauridsen is ‘the only American composer who can be called a mystic.’

The film’s narrative includes the composer’s creating his magnum opus, Lux Aeterna, to help cope with the death of his mother. This choral work, together with others of his compositions such as O Magnum Mysterium and Nocturnes, has brought comfort and inspiration to millions throughout America and across the world.  

Song Without Borders has most recently launched Infusus: Imagery and Music for Healing & Relaxation, designed to provide relaxation and contemplative reflection, particularly for those in hospital rehab or palliative care.  

Infusus features soundtracks of soothing and inspirational music combined together with video and photography of natural landscapes. The non-language aspect of this project lends itself to international application. The first pilot of this project is on the in-house media system of Kantonspital Glarus, a hospital serving Kanton Glarus an hour south of Zurich, Switzerland.  

Song Without Borders will continue to offer SongSourcing - an innovative creative arts expressive method, using songmaking as a way of reconnecting to one’s essential creativity. Alternatives, Inc, a nonprofit youth development organization in Virginia, is now piloting SongSourcing as an innovative creative expression method for inner city children and youth.

Michael and his wife, contemplative psychologist Doris Laesser Stillwater, also present 6-day renewal retreats for health care practitioners and the general public.

Michael Stillwater and Song Without Borders joined Living Bridges in 2011.

Watch the first trailer for the documentary, Infusus: Imagery and Music for Healing & Relaxation

Songs of the Ancestors

Family Constellations and Health Care

Hella NeumannSongs of the Ancestors is the most recent Living Bridges program. It is directed by Hella Neumann who uses the modality of Family Constellation Work for generational healing. This phenomenological work brings to light ancestral dynamics within the Family System, where illness, disease and patterns of dysfunction may manifest. Through the orders of love, families are able to begin a process of profound healing.

Songs of the Ancestors has provided many years of support and training for individuals, groups and professionals. Offering support for those with chronic and life threatening illness, hospice patients, caregivers and families in crisis through conflict resolution.

In 2014, Living Bridges launched the 2-day Southwestern Constellation Symposium, Coming Together - Creating Community, with local and out of state presenters. Participants experienced professional exchange from diverse communities, unique styles of facilitation, supervision and community building for a greater reach.

Future goals for Songs of the Ancestors include supervision and professional support for facilitators, offering continuing education credits and an intensive training formulated to teach the fundamentals of Systemic Constellation Work as professional development for health care professionals and teachers.

Hella worked for 18 years in the field of Art Therapy, Bioenergetics and Biodynamic massage. In 1997, she started to work with Bert Hellinger, the German founder of Systemic Family Constellation Work. She was part of the first generation of students who received intensive training from Hellinger. In 1998, Hella brought Systemic Constellations to the US. She has been offering individual sessions, workshops and trainings for facilitators under the name “Songs of the Ancestors.”

With great love Hella brings this generational healing approach to benefit the personal and professional lives of individuals, nurses, social workers, teachers, counselors, coaches and many more. For the past two years she has presented the Systemic Family Constellation Work in the Annual Transformation and Healing Conference of the Southwestern College in Santa Fe. She was also a presenter at the U.S. Constellation Conference in Seattle in 2013.

Hella earned her MA in Art and Education from the University of Berlin, Germany. She is a certified Facilitator and Trainer of the Systemic Family Constellation Work (DGfS).


Triple Bottom Line Health Care Program

Sustainability is part of a trend to consider the whole instead of the specific. Sustainability emphasizes relationships rather than pieces in isolation. Sustainability is about understanding our situation, and developing communities in ways that are equitable, and that make sense ecologically and economically.

— Center for Sustainable Communities

FairCare is a health care systems model based on the accountability framework of the triple bottom line, or the Three Ps:  People, Planet, and Prosperity/Profit. Also mirroring the ethical principles of permaculture (care of people, care of the earth, and sharing surplus), the FairCare model will bridge gaps in existing health care management systems, providing integrative solutions to health care challenges.  

Just as the Fair Trade social movement seeks to promote greater equity in international trading partnerships through dialogue, transparency and respect, FairCare seeks the same in health care by advocating stakeholder representation in an industry dominated by shareholders: when accounting/accountability and ethics unite, all interests are served.

Living Bridges, Inc. seeks financial donations and volunteer support for sustaining and developing its programs. Contact us if you have any questions.

Thank you for reading our first newsletter.
Camille, Michael and Hella

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