Meet Nursing Hero Mo Gaffney

I would like to nominate RN Mo Gaffney for the Nursing Hero Award.

At the Downtown Community Health Centre at 569 Powell Street in Vancouver, we serve a diverse client base with highly complex care needs, and our days are very busy and challenging.

Nurse Mo recognized the latent artistic talent of an 85 year old single pensioner who led a very simple life with few activities to fill his days.  She encouraged him and purposefully aided the development of his creative process.  His passion for creating unique art with this newly discovered talent became his life’s purpose.

He has gradually acquired more tools and supplies, has built his own easle, and continues to create ever more striking art pieces.

This striking and relevant art began appearing on the walls of the Downtown Community Health Centre over the last year, as this man brought his work and shared it with the clinic staff and others in the community.

Nurse Mo took the initiative to increase the audience for the client’s work.  She arranged for a local gallery, the Gallery Gachet, to review his work and in December 2015, there was an exhibit of the client’s work at the gallery.  It was well attended and many pieces were sold. 

As the client continues to create art on a daily basis and his talents evolve, nurse Mo has continued to find ways to share this remarkable talent with the broader community.  She has just confirmed that a film student has been given the go-ahead to make a documentary about this artist and his work.

Nurse Mo has invested a great deal of her personal time to nurture the talents of this client.  Her efforts have become a common point of engagement among the clinic staff as we witness the self-actualization of this 85 year old man.  The gift of this man’s creations to our clinic and our community is all owing to the passion, caring, time, and enthusiasm of this one special nurse, Mo Gaffney.

Please consider this nomination and honour her outstanding work.


Nominated by: Margery Duda

Downtown Community Health Centre

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