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Hike for Hospice set to run on May 2nd

Stettler hospice suite is now officially available for families

The annual Hike for Hospice is quickly approaching, with the event slated to run May 2nd at West Stettler Park.

Registration fees are $15 for those 18 and up, and $10 for those ages 10 to 17.

Those nine and under can take part for free, said Nancy Bauman, a board member of the Society.

Registration kicks off at 10 a.m. with the hike starting at 11 a.m.

“We had the very first one two years ago, but had to miss last year due to COVID-19,” she said. The first year proved a big success, drawing about 90 people.

“The first year was very successful, and we are hoping for even more people to take part this year,” she said, adding that funds raised go to supporting ongoing operational expenses. The hospice suite is also offered free of charge.

The Stettler Hospice Society was launched back in February of 2018, and the suite, which is located in Points West Stettler, actually was completed last August.

Anyone who is interested in finding out more about utilizing the suite is encouraged to first discuss that with their family physician. The spacious and comfortable suite, which can be entered privately through an entrance at the back of the building, features everything a family would need to help take care of a loved one through the final stages of life.

“Everyone is happy that it’s here to serve the community, and everyone has really shown a lot of support for it as well,” she said.

According to the Society’s web site, the terms ‘palliative care’ or ‘hospice’ are, “Both meant to bring comfort and relief, but they differ in some important ways.

“Palliative care aims to ease pain and help with other problems if your illness is considered to be life-threatening, but end of life is not imminent. It helps people live with the symptoms of long-running serious illnesses.

“Palliative Care helps you to have some control over your life and illness. You are still in active treatment seeking quality and quantity of life.

“Hospice care is for people who are no longer receiving active treatment. It is about easing pain and helping families prepare for the end of life.

“Hospice Care strives to meet the end of life with dignity, provide for the patient and the family while allowing serenity no matter what the circumstances may be.”

The Society’s overall vision is to provide loving, compassionate care for the emotional, physical and spiritual needs of patients and their families during end of life by relieving suffering, providing comfort and helping to improve quality of living and dying.

Ultimately, it’s also hoped that a facility will eventually be set up in town.

In the meantime, fundraising efforts are continuing.

It was a few years ago that Nancy, along with Felicity Bauman were chatting, and Nancy had mentioned that she would like to start a hospice.

Felicity immediately said that was something she wanted to do as well.

At their first community meeting, more than 70 people showed up – so it was clear that the concept resonated with the people of Stettler and area.

Today, the two-bedroom suite is fully stocked – there is a kitchen, a living room and it has all of the equipment needed to help lift and support patients as well as Broda chairs and heating blankets, too.

Family members are welcome to care for their loved one as they are able. Qualified nursing staff will also be available to help when and as needed.

For more information about taking part in Hike for Hospice, email admin@stettlerhospice.org. Folks can also register online at www.stettlerhospice.org or in person at CAMIS Stettler.

Nancy also mentioned that the Society is always looking for volunteers, so if anyone is interested they can contact Service Coordinator Bonny Douglas at servicecoordinator@stettlerhospice.org.

Again, for more information regarding volunteering, Hike for Hospice, or general information, visit www.stettlerhospice.org, call Nancy Bauman at 403-741-6179, email admin@stettlerhospice.org or find them on Facebook at Stettler Hospice Society.