Dying: Importance of Hospice in Our Community

April 25, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Dying: Importance of Hospice in Our Community

“You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.” Ralph Waldo Emerson


Most of us have endured the painful loss of someone whom we care deeply about.  Some of us have had personal experience interacting with the hospice volunteers and staff, and been so incredibly humbled by their selflessness and compassion.  For those wonderful people at Nanaimo Hospice, I have seen firsthand the amazing work that they do.  Hospice truly affirms life, and provides immeasurable support and care for people and their families who are in the final stages of life.  Nanaimo Hospice assisted over 2,250 people last year alone.  They have seen a 21% increase in the number of child and youth clients in the past year.  As a young child watching my own mother endure countless surgeries before her passing at only 34 years of age, I truly wish that there had been programs in place to help me cope with the tragic loss of my mom.  

Recently, I had the tremendous pleasure to visit the new home of the Nanaimo Hospice as the hard work continues to transform the former Nanaimo Montessori located at 1080 St. George Crescent.  There is something magical about stepping inside a building that has seen so many children plant gardens, learn about the world, and learn to even count by fives and tie their shoelaces for the very first time.  There is a warmth and calming spirit that will remain a testament to the love and care that the hospice principle is built upon.

It has been an exciting yet challenging year for Nanaimo Hospice as they near the end of the Expand the Heart of Hospice Capital Campaign to purchase, renovate and move into their new home.  They have reached 90% of their $1.25M goal and hope to be moving into the new location in June.  The new Hospice House will provide twice the space, wheelchair accessibility, lots of parking, room for therapeutic gardens and the ability to grow their programs and services.  Hospice is one of the many not for profit organizations who rely on our community for funding  to enable them to provide free services to their clients (only 1% of their annual budget coming from health care dollars).

They are looking for a few items for their new home, and I wanted to share them with you, in case you are able to assist Nanaimo Hospice.  If you are able to contribute any of these items, Hospice would be extremely appreciative. Here was their “wish list” that they provided:

3 IPods and Docking Stations
2 Kurig Coffee Makers
3 sets of matching dishes (12 settings)
12 settings of Flatware  
4 dozen mugs
4 dozen water glasses
2 – 42” flat screen tv’s to mount in Training Room and Palliative Day Program Room
Candles and new towels
Gift certificates from places like Jysk/Homesense/The Bay/Sears

DANCE TICKETS!  Nanaimo Hospice is also hosting a fundraising effort this Saturday night (April 27, 2013) at the Canadian Legion (across the street from Quarterway School) starting at 7pm. Tickets are only $20 and can be purchased at any of the Hospice Thrift Stores, current Hospice Office (on Boundary) or by calling 250-756-2138.  Let’s help Nanaimo Hospice meet their goal, so they can concentrate their efforts on providing care for those facing end of life issues in our community.

Best Regards,
Brian McCullough


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