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Lesson learned from Hospice volunteers speaks volumes

Recently there has been much written about Hospice Prince Edward in the local media. Last week’s announcement that, for the interim, Stephanie McLaren, Executive Director of the Family Health Team will act as Executive Director and Resident Service Manager can only be a positive step for the community and Hospice.

Meanwhile the two remaining board members and hopefully some community members will work together to bring the Hospice board up to a full complement of 11 members. I believe also that they will be discussing bylaws. The community made that suggestion very clear at the July 29th community meeting.

I have nothing but admiration for the four Hospice volunteers who organized the community meeting.  Pat Dye, Marianne  Malachowski, Annette Gaskin and Jean Algar were asked by the many other volunteers to speak to the board on their behalf with specific questions. When the former board chose not to meet with them, they decided to take their questions to the community (many of whom are donors) via the media. The result was a very well organized and respectful meeting with the help of former Hospice Board Chair Mark Larratt Smith and former councillor Bev Campbell.

The fact that these volunteers did not “roll over” when the board initially refused to meet with them speaks volumes. They  spoke up and were not afraid to do so. Perhaps there is a lesson here for other organizations and their volunteers

Over the last month the many volunteers have continued to work at the Hospice house and in the community and you will continue to see the many  volunteers working throughout the community as they have done in the past.

A good example of that took place at the Lockyer/Ward Art Auction where 60 per cent of the volunteers were from Hospice. Hopefully many will continue to play a large part in fundraising efforts.

I can tell you that the volunteers at Hospice Prince Edward are a caring and well trained group of individuals. They have always worked together as a family and will continue to do so with the original vision of Hospice Prince Edward always in mind. That is to provide pallative and bereavement support, free of charge, to families and individuals.

Fran Renoy

Filed Under: Letters and OpinionNews from Everywhere Else

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