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Community supports fourth Hike for Hospice

Hike-Hikers

Hikers, strollers, ramblers, and wanderers raised $27,223.85 for Hospice Prince Edward’s fourth annual pledge-based hike.

Volunteers, friends and families of those Hospice Prince Edward has served gathered Sunday morning at the Prince Edward Community Centre for a  social hour and warm up session led by Kathy Terpstra. The walk led participants through downtown Picton and back to the arena for a barbecue lunch, prizes and entertainment.

“We are raising much-needed funds to support people in our community who are living with progressive life limiting illness, their loved ones and caregivers,” said Judy Fraser, Hospice resource development co-ordinator. “One hundred percent of the funds raised will remain in our community.”

The funds are added to more than $115,000 raised by the community over the past three years. Hospice Prince Edward, at 40 Downes Ave., Picton, provides end-of-life care, grief and bereavement programs and services to families and individuals of all ages in Prince Edward County, at no charge. While the South East Local Health Integration Network funds care at the centre, fundraising is needed to pay for heat, hydro, water and building maintenance.

“When I reflect back on the first hospice hike four years ago the idea of a residential hospital was a goal, and still a little bit of a dream,” said Nancy Parks, Hospice Executive Director. “We are celebrating today not only the reality of having the services of  a residential hospice in Prince Edward County, but we are celebrating today with the many families who we have welcomed through our doors.”

Hospice has been part of 70 families’ journeys.

HOSPICE PRINCE EDWARD“Hospice Prince Edward’s vision is supporting the journey of living with dying and we have achieved that goal with every birthday party, wedding, baptism, food, food and more food; tears and hugs, music, laughter and conversation, Today feels like a reunion for us at Hospice Prince Edward and it is our wish that families know that we are here for you not only for today, but always,” said Parks. “Our hope and wish is that by you taking part in today’s hike and celebrating your loved one’s life, it provides a measure of comfort for your grief journey.”

Parks extended thanks to the volunteers, businesses, service clubs, hike committee and contributors for their part in making the event unfold.

“One of the things I love is that we do all of the thank-yous before we even begin to think about what funds were raised because that’s about the people, and hospice is about the people,” said Birgit Langswich, past president, on behalf of the board. “It’s about this extraordinary community that made it possible for us to have a three-bed hospice available and who have worked tirelessly just as we have – you’re all our volunteer family. Thank you.”

The County joined thousands of people across the country raising funds for community residential hospice services. Nationally, Hike for Hospice is in its 12th year.

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