Kimberley has been without hospice services for several years since the Kimberley Hospice Society, under the dedicated direction of Pat White, folded. Now the Cranbrook Hospice Society is expanding and changing their name to the Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society, in order to bring hospice back to Kimberley.
The Society has found two Kimberley board members says Don Davidson from the Hospice Society, but would like to pick up a few more.
“Having board members from Kimberley gives us more contact with the community, more ability to assess what the needs are,” he said. The Society is also looking for volunteers from Kimberley.
The Hospice Society provides support to persons at the end of life, and also support to their families as they go through the dying process and bereavement.
“We pair a trained volunteer with a person at the end of life,” Davidson said. “We get to know the family, then offer bereavement support. We keep in touch with the family for a year or more after the death.”
The Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society recognizes the importance of spirituality but have no affiliation with any specific religious organization. Services are free and strictly confidential.
You can be referred to the Hospice Society by family members, care givers, physicians, friends, clergy or anyone else simply by calling the Hospice Society office at 250-417-2019 or email Hospice1@telus.net
Davidson says training sessions are beginning in November and if there are enough volunteers from Kimberley, the training could take place here as well. In addition, the Society will shift board meetings back and forth between Kimberley and Cranbrook.
There is a hospice room at the Kimberley Special Care Home (the Pines) which was equipped by the former Kimberley Hospice Society.
“It is not used just for hospice,” Davidson said. “But we would work closely with the people at the Pines.
“We are open to supporting it.”
Davidson says that he has found hospice work to be very satisfying, but a large group of volunteers is essential as is a good funding model.
“It took two or three years in Cranbrook to get it back on its feet. We want to be sustainable. Pat White did a wonderful service to the Community in Kimberley but she was carrying it all on her shoulders. It’s wearing work. We’d like to spread it out a little, have more people available to provide the services.”
There is no cost for Hospice services. The agency is supported by the United Way as well as donations. There will be a hospice Memory Tree in the Tamarack Mall this December and you are invited to make a donation and hang a snowflake in memory of a loved one.
If you would like to be involved in the Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society as a volunteer or board member call the office number or Davidson at home at 250-489-5528.
Currently the Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Socieyt Board consists of Don Davidson, Dawn Storgaard, Thom McCaughey, Kevin Doll, Karen Grant, Kim Miller, Jacquie van Zyl and Jeanne Davidson.