Compassion Home Moving Forward
Gerber Memorial nurses spearheading Newaygo County’s first hospice home to hold fundraiser
Several Newaygo County women are leading a community-wide effort to establish Newaygo County’s first full hospice home and a key event to raise funds is a May 19 silent auction fundraiser at the Dogwood Center for the Performing Arts.
The fundraiser will be from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and feature fun, exciting gifts and packages to benefit a good cause, the establishment of Compassion Home, a hospice home that can serve three guests a time.
“We invite everyone in the community to join our fun, festive evening that truly celebrates life and our loved ones, by supporting the establishment of a home that can provide compassionate, respectful end-of-life care for people who can’t stay in their own homes,” said Ann Lapres-Hindes, who along with..
...fellow Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial nurses Brandee Chase and Amy Drilling, first conceived of the idea in 2013 and began raising funds in 2016.
Once up and running, Compassion Home is expected to serve around 100 guests a year, Lapres-Hindes said. The home will be available to guests who are in the final days or weeks of a terminal illness, with each guest under the care of a hospice provider in Newaygo County.
The May 19 fundraiser hopes to generate $50,000.
“Compassion Home will be a special community-supported place to live and be cared for during the last moments of life, and it will put comfort and compassion front and center for guests and their loved ones,” Lapres-Hindes said. “Compassion House will be independent and a true grassroots resource that will belong to our community. It will be a home for those in the last stages of life, and this community-driven effort will give them peace and comfort.”
Lapres-Hindes said more than 80 percent of Americans prefer to die at home or in a home-like setting, yet only 20 percent get that opportunity. Many individuals end up in relatively sterile acute care facilities, surrounded by machines and strangers, she said.
“Families face many barriers to providing the kind of care their loved ones want and deserve, including geographic distance, or some families just don’t have the resources or safe spaces to properly care for a loved one,” Lapres Hindes said. “Often, they can’t find caregivers, and caring for a terminally ill loved one can be very stressful. We believe Compassion Home can provide relief for families in Newaygo County.”