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Community team work made a dream work at Hospice

Hospice-community-nightHospice Prince Edward thanked a community for its team work that helped make a dream work during a community meeting last week.

The residential hospice, at Downes Ave., in Picton is an evaulation project of the Local Health Integration Network to provide palliative and end of life care and support, free of charge, to residents of Prince Edward County.

“With 26 families in eight months that have passed through our doors we have already shown value and we will continue to, all the while making recommendations on how our project can save healthcare dollars,” said Nancy Parks, Hospice executive director, at a celebration and community meeting in the Picton Town Hall. “We are not only an evaluation project for our LHIN to be replicated elsewhere in rural eastern Ontario, but the LHIN reminds us continually that the province is watching this model very closely.”

Also evaluated, she said, is the human benefits.

“Losing a loved one is the most difficult time for anyone. If we can help someone’s journey and support families in that journey, even in a small way, the benefits and rewards are enormous.”

She shared comments from a man who resides in a large, urban area who said he couldn’t believe he was sitting with his mom in a beautiful hospice in Prince Edward County – with a population of 25,000, when his city has been working for more than five years to create a hospice – with no end in sight.

“I smiled and said, ‘yes, we have a unique community here,” said Parks, explaining the project took an incredible amount of volunteer hours to succeed.

“This is where the real story is. This story continues by the many families who have experienced residential hospice services. We continually have an outpouring of notes, cards and letters from families expressing their gratitude. Even though those cards are directed to us, they are really directed to the members of the community who supported this project with their time, donations, expertise, commitment, belief and faith.”

The community raised $775,000 for the residential project. Hospice Prince Edward has no debt and to date has realized a balanced budget. The community campaign to raise $850,000 is still under way to finish the landscape work and pay back reserves.

The community and hospice will join together again in support for the Hike for Hospice event Sunday, May 4 beginning at the Community Centre in the Picton arena.

“There are tears at hospice,” said Parks, “but they are outweighed by tears of relief when families walk into the hospice and a bit of the weight of the world is lifted… I have had many family and friends of loved ones who have died at our hospice ask me to please convey to whomever ‘did this’, ‘created this’, their grateful thanks.”

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  1. Wolf Braun says:

    Three years ago I spent ten days visiting daily with my Aunt while she was in a hospice facility. My Aunt was so happy knowing the journey she was on. I was so impressed with this particular hospice, its staff and everything … it was not a sad ten day daily visit… it was a joyous visit. Hospice is a wonderful experience.

  2. Paul says:

    That’s what Prince Edward County is all about People, People who are willing to Volunteer to better their Community People who show a considerable amount of compassion for their neighbors and others in the Community.. Yes people come for the beach’s and the winery’s but its the Class of the People in Prince Edward County that keeps em coming back…. Hospice Prince Edward is a reflection of County Folk…

  3. Gary says:

    I am sure that is true. However many of us would by choice desire to have access to assisted death. No home, no dragging on. We do it for our pets, it’s time for humans to die with dignity when terminal.

  4. Donald Jackson says:

    My sister , Debbie Norton most of her life , wife of Bob Norton life time county resident died in a hospice in Cambridge Ont. where they had moved to be near their grandchildren. The care Debbie and all of us received was something I was unaware of. Just an incredible facility and of great assistance to all family members. To be treasured and worthy of all support. Donald G. Jackson former 20 year Toronto Police officer.

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