Workshops examine living wills the ‘Five Wishes’ way

The “Five Wishes” is considered one of the most well-known and well-respected ways for individuals to record their desires for care in times of serious illness. It is written in everyday language and helps start and structure important thinking and conversations around the topic.

To help people preserve their dignity and legacy through a living will document, Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources — a division of the county’s Human Services Department — will sponsor free public workshops in March in Tacoma, Graham and SouthHill.

“Ultimately we all want to have a good life and, if it happens, to experience the kind of care we want during a serious illness” said Aaron Van Valkenburg, manager of Aging and Disability Resources. “One of the best ways to do that is to consider five core wishes for our care and to formally write that down. Many people have found the experience of working on their Five Wishes and talking with their family to be overwhelmingly positive. We strongly urge every adult to think through those wishes that are unique to them.”

The workshops, titled “Five Wishes …and More,” will be held:

  • March 5 at noon at the Pierce County Annex, 2401 S. 35th St. in Tacoma;
  • March 6 at 6:30 pm. at the Graham branch of Pierce County Library, System 9202 224th St. E.
  • March 7 at 6:30 p.m. at the South Hill branch of Pierce County Library, 15420 Meridian E.
  • March 10 at 10 a.m. at the Pierce County Sound View Building, 3602 Pacific Ave. in Tacoma.

“Five Wishes” will be augmented by a presentation about five secrets to living well, Van Valkenburg said.  The presentation is appropriate for adults of all ages.

The information-only workshops will be presented by Kirsteen McDowall, a professional life coach and family service counselor at Fir Lane Memorial Park in Spanaway. Participants in the workshops will receive a “Five Wishes” workbook and supplementary materials. 

Additional information is available at 253-798-4600.