“For death begins with life’s first breath; And life begins at touch of death,” wrote John Oxenham.
On November 23rd, the Dundas County Hospice (DCH), located on Villa Drive in Williamsburg, saw a group of 13 volunteers graduate from their 10 week/ 30 hour Hospice Palliative Care course.
According to material provided by DCH, “volunteers make the difference. DCH volunteers are special people who are warm and caring, and offer emotional support.”
DCH defines hospice as “a philosophy of care,” which basically sums up their purpose: “DCH recognizes the uniqueness of individuals and their families, and how life-threatening illness affects them. Compassionate care is directed at improving their lives physically, emotionally and spiritually.”
The hospice offers service seven days per week. They provide trained volunteers, support groups for anyone suffering from a life-threatening illness, support groups for families, and bereavement support. Loans of specialty equipment, books, videos, or video recording equipment are also available.
Dame Cicely Saunders, founder of the modern hospice movement, once said “families need support and help to draw on their own strengths and patients’ understanding of their emotional problems and aid in their spiritual search for meaning, sense of self and the possibility of growth through loss.”
For more information on available services, or to find out more about the next Hospice Palliative Care course, to be held in the spring of 2012, phone 613-535-2215 or go to the DCH website at www.dundascountyhospice.ca.
Dame Cicely Saunders is quoted on the first page of DCH’s yearly newsletter saying, “you are as important on the day that you die as the day you were born.”