“Before we start, I just wanted to say how much I like her and how lucky we are to have her,” Julia Inglis, Family Leadership Council (FLC) co-chair expresses. “She is a breath of fresh air.”
Inglis is speaking of the newly appointed FLC co-chair, Neda Moghadam. The position became vacant earlier this year and FLC members were invited to apply by October 30.
Co-chairpersons collaborate with the coordinator, Patient Experience Office and director, Quality, Patient Safety and Patient Experience to set the agenda for council meetings. IWK patients, families, staff and physicians may bring to the council issues, initiatives or proposed programs for which they are seeking input.
“Neda just wants to know how she can help and offers input into everything, in a very thoughtful and cohesive way,” Inglis says. “And while she is the youngest member of FLC, she does it so maturely and wisely. She brings a totally different perspective, in a positive manner, trying her best to help make a difference.”
For her part, Moghadam is extremely grateful and excited about the opportunity.
“I had a condition that was treated for a short period of time when I was younger,” Moghadam says. “The experience had a huge impact on me and I joined the Youth Advisory Council (YAC). After about a year on YAC, the coordinator indicated FLC was looking for YAC representation and I put my hand up.”
Moghadam admits she didn’t know much about FLC when she first joined in March 2020, and was nervous going to her first meeting, thinking how many professionals and IWK staff would be present. It didn’t take her too long to feel right at home and at ease.
“Everyone was so welcoming and I was amazed at how sympathetic all the IWK staff were,” Moghadam says. “As I listened and realized the topics were at the core of patient and family care at the IWK, I started to think there might just be something to this.”
Since then, Moghadam has joined seven committees as a patient and family advisor. When the opportunity for co-chair came up, she did not think she was qualified for it, but she says Theresa Rogers (FLC coordinator) and Julia Inglis were very supportive of her applying.
“I have to admit I was a bit shocked to get the position, but I feel very supported in this,” Moghadam says. “And I think I do have an important perspective to bring as the only youth voice on FLC, as a large part of the IWK’s mandate is treating children and youth.”
She is also very grateful and eager to work alongside Inglis, from whom she expects to learn a lot.
“Neda has already been a wonderful addition and it’s going to take her no time at all to get up to speed,” Inglis said.
Neda Moghadam’s term as FLC co-chair was officially announced at the November 18 FLC meeting.
Outside of her volunteer efforts with Family Leadership Council, Moghadam is doing her first year undergrad in medical studies at Dalhousie University. She has been playing piano since she was six, and also likes to write and paint water colours.