a feather to write the memories of the seriously ill


A branch of the association “Traces de Vies” opens in the Nazairian region, and goes to the bedside of sufferers of all ages for their life stories.

Cristelle Pigeard, Christelle Cuinet and MP Audrey Dufeu / © SaintNazaireNews.fr

Posted on October 06, 2021 at 11:47 am.

It is on the occasion of the screening at Cinéville of a documentary on her profession as a hospital biographer that Christelle Cuinet, founder of the association “Traces de Vies” is held to present her action to the public and to caregivers in the region. . During this film-debate organized by the deputy Audrey Dufeu who supports the national association 4 years, the public to meet Christelle Pigeard, new biographer of the association on the region. Whether with people in the twilight of their lives, but also with children going through the disease and who need to put words into this difficult ordeal, the young woman has a book. Their book. To pass on to their loved ones to remember or to share.

A main job in hand with the nursing teams

It was after a strict selection by the association and a certified training followed for 9 months that Christelle Pigeard was able to open a branch of Traces de Vie in Loire-Atlantique. Knowing how to listen, knowing how to write, being attentive and faithful, but also capable of not becoming attached, qualities that the young woman was able to exercise as an end-of-life biographer. “There are about ten hospital biographers in France. 5 are part of Traces de Vies » specifies Christelle Cuinet. “The specificity of our association is to support patients of all ages, including children in palliative care “. And it is on a report from the nursing teams, when they feel the need of the patients to speak, that the biographer can come and accompany them and those wishing to leave behind them a trace of their passage. “The role of the accompanying biographer goes well beyond the simple recording of the patient’s words and their faithful transcription. It is a sharing, an exchange, a moment of great intimacy and proximity where everything can be said in a climate of gentleness and delicacy, from which are born real treasures. »Says Dr Arnaud Chèvre, from the mobile palliative care team in Beaune.

Books in which children are the heroes

150 books have already been written by the association throughout France, since its creation in 2011 in the Jura. If some retrace the memories that elderly people want to leave for their children and grandchildren before dying, others on the contrary allow the youngest to express to their parents superheroes who will fight against the disease. “Palliative care is also life »Insists Christelle Cuinet. At an age when dialogue is sometimes difficult for teenagers, or when younger people cannot find the words, this book can also be a precious testimony to keep for the life that goes on.

A book printed in 10 copies

“A period of 2 to 3 months is generally necessary for speaking and writing, in the hospital or at home” explains Christelle Pigeard. Writing also requires great adaptability of the biography, depending on the time remaining. 3 to 4 biographies can be written simultaneously by the young woman who must also take into account the evolution of the disease. “Some patients are extinct just a few days after the book is handed over to the family. We must never forget that they are the ones who decide and choose what they want to transmit ” she indicates. The book is given in 10 copies to the persons designated by the patient, sometimes in their presence, or sometimes after their departure. Support for an amount of 3000 to 4000 euros is free for the patient. “There are not enough end-of-life biographers and the Traces de vies association is dependent on the donations it receives. Support is not charged to people at the end of their life, nor to their families. We must make their action known to the general public. I know how much we are united in the estuary. I believe in this project and in Christelle Pigeard, our new biographer, to carry it insists MP Audrey Dufeu.

Traces of Lives • More information on biographer training, patient support, or donations on 07 85 93 87 55 or 06 08 06 72 15.


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