By Lanier Laney
Lindsay Roberg, BSN, RN, was recently hired as the new director of clinical operations for Friends of Caroline Hospice, a local nonprofit that provides quality care and support for those living with life-threatening illnesses and their families.
Lindsay oversees the daily operations of the clinical staff at Friends of Caroline Hospice and is a part of the clinical team. Her job consists of hiring, scheduling, education and coordinating care to ensure the best patient and family holistic care possible.
“My job is full of puzzles and everyday is different!” she said. “I love it because it allows problem solving that positively impacts people’s lives. I always say I love the difference that Friends of Caroline Hospice can make in an hour. It’s amazing.”
Lindsay, who was born in Carbondale, Illinois, in southern Illinois, said she was raised all over the U.S. as a military brat. “My family moved every three years so I’ve lived in all types of places including Fargo, North Dakota, and Yuma, Arizona. I’ve spent the majority of my life in Beaufort though — I guess I can officially call myself a local? I’ve been here 19 years.”
She “discovered” Beaufort because her father was stationed here twice. After he retired from the Marine Corps after 20 years, the family settled here.
Lindsay met her husband, Jim Spratling, at the Habersham Farmers Market. He was running a French bistro there and Lindsay and her mom were selling goat milk soap at the market. They have been very happily married for four years.
Jim, formerly a chef at Saltus, has been working at the Callawassee Island Club as the executive chef for the past two years.
Lindsay is very proud of the children of her blended family: her daughter, Madisen, 8, attends Riverview Charter School, while her stepson Jaxon, 14, attends Beaufort Middle School, and Miles, 10, attends Bridges Preparatory School.
Her favorite thing about Beaufort is being outdoors — whether it’s boating, fishing, kayaking or scuba diving. “There is always someway to enjoy the beauty of where we live,” she said.
When it comes to her job, Lindsay said she has always known she wanted to work in the medical field. “My road has been a long tangled one that I believe led me to this career for my purpose,” she says. “After working for South Carolina Department of Natural Resources for 10 years as a biologist, I bit the bullet and went back to school for nursing. I couldn’t be happier about my choice. It was difficult, but so worth it.”
Lindsay describes the critical role that nurses play when it comes to hospice care: “Nurses have the ability to connect with mankind on a very personal level, one that is both the beginning and end of life. The impact that a nurse can have on this journey is one that was intriguing to me. Hospice care is a field of nursing that is misunderstood and continues to carry stigmas. It is important for nurses to advocate for hospice care in end-of-life. The support that a patient and their support system can experience can change the dynamics of end-of-life care. Once I had the experience of hospice, I knew it was the field for me. We are able to help people at a time in life that is very important for the human experience.”
She said she hopes to change people’s misconceptions about hospice care. “Generally when people think of hospice care, they immediately think of the bad. There are a lot of good, happy moments in hospice. It is very rewarding.”
Her dedication toward her chosen career and her work ethic she learned from her family. Lindsay says, “My parents always taught me that our most important work is to have a purpose. Whether it is something you are drawn to or a purpose you create, put 110 percent into whatever you are doing. My dad always said ‘you may not be able to change the world, but you can change your corner.’ That is my mission. I want to educate this community about hospice care and the importance of taking care of one another.”
Friends of Caroline Hospice started out as a group of individuals who saw a need for hospice care in Beaufort and wanted to make a difference in the community, and 33 years later the organization continues to full fill that mission. Says Lindsay, “People helping people — that’s what it’s all about.”
• If interested in volunteering or donating or finding out more about this local nonprofit, contact Friends of Caroline Hospice by calling 843-525-6257 or visiting the office at 1110 13th Street, Port Royal, SC, 29935, or online at www.friendsofcarolinehospice.org.