Hospice News

Singing for Hospice- Muskoka Rock Choir
In December 2022, the Muskoka Rock Choir celebrated their 10th Anniversary ‘Singing for Hospice’ concerts.
The concert’s profits were donated to benefit the local hospices in Huntsville (Hospice Huntsville) and Port Carling (Hospice Muskoka). Each hospice received $3,565. Hospice Huntsville is so grateful for the generous donation in support of our programs and services.
Pictured L-R: Choir Members, Marcie Yale, Linda Exell, Hospice Huntsville staff members, Pam Martin and Vanessa Vandersluis and Choir Member, Terry Exell


Pictured L-R:  Graydon Smith: MPP Parry Sound Muskoka, Gordon Schakelaar: Hospice Huntsville Board President, Rebecca Ellerson: Hospice Huntsville Executive Director, Charles Cooper: Ontario Trillium Foundation Grant Review Team Volunteer, Karin Terziano: Mayor of Huntsville

Hospice Huntsville Receives a $38,300 OTF Resilient Communities Fund Grant

Huntsville, ON (October 31, 2022):  On Friday, MPP Graydon Smith and local dignitaries met with Hospice Huntsville staff and volunteers to hear more about the impact of a $38,300 Resilient Communities Fund grant that the Hospice received earlier this year.

“I’m thrilled that Hospice Huntsville has received this much deserved grant,’ said Graydon Smith, MPP Parry Sound-Muskoka. “This funding is crucial in helping the organization recover from the challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Compassionate and accessible end of life care is integral to building resilient and healthy communities. We’re fortunate to have an organization like Hospice Huntsville active in our community and I’m very pleased that this grant will enable it to strengthen its programing and support services.”

Funds from the grant were used to help Hospice Huntsville with the costs of implementing safe programs adapted to reduce social isolation and supporting accessible, compassionate, end of life needs.  The grant enabled it to introduce legacy projects for its Algonquin Grace residents and family members and by developing “Hug Boxes” for children and youth visiting loved ones at hospice. Funds were also used to help with a new enhanced website, a video encompassing an overview of the organization’s programs and services, health and safety supplies for hospice visiting volunteers, laptop computers to allow members of the community to participate in virtual grief and bereavement support programming and additional marketing to ensure that the community knows Hospice Huntsville is here to support them safely in their time of need, including publication of new information material for community members.

During the application of the grant, COVID-19 had impacted Hospice Huntsville operations, resulting in a reduction in fundraising revenues typically raised through event-based fundraising. These funds help support all Hospice Huntsville programs, including the five-bed residential hospice, the Visiting Volunteer Program, and the grief and bereavement programs. Hospice Huntsville’s support programs were also impacted. Due to the nature of the Visiting Volunteer and the grief and bereavement programs, they had been held in group or one-to-one settings of a more intimate nature requiring close contact.  These programs were suspended during the pandemic.  Hospice services are an essential facet of our local health care system.

It is through the Resilient Communities Fund grant that Hospice Huntsville was able to “come together while staying apart” and address this gap in our services to strengthen our capacity to operate within the given restrictions.  For more information about Hospice Huntsville, please visit www.hospicehuntsville.com

The Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) mission is to build healthy and vibrant communities across Ontario.  As an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations, last year, OTF invested nearly $209M into 2,042 community projects and partnerships, which included funding for the Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund.  Since 2020, OTF has supported Ontario’s economic recovery by helping non-profit organizations rebuild and recover from the impacts of Covid-19.  Visit www.otf.ca to learn more.


Celebrating Hospice Hug Boxes
Thank you once again to the Ontario Trillium Foundation for awarding Hospice Huntsville the Resilient Communities Fund Grant. With the grant funds were have been able to make the dream of Hug Boxes, a reality. Hug boxes are given to children and youth who have a immediate family member at Algonquin Grace.
A special thank you to Raj Jammu (Owner) and Debbie Breadner (Manager) from the Great Canadian Dollar Store in Huntsville for all their assistance and organization with the selection of Hug Box activities.
Each bear in the Hug Boxes was donated by Catherine Clail. Catherine is a volunteer through the Bear Education/Outreach Initiative with Bear With Us. These cuddly bears were from her own personal collection that she used in her education workshops.
Hospice Volunteers
Thank you to our Hospice Volunteers who brainstormed and participated in the initial overall concept of “Welcoming Children to Hospice”.
Thank you to our volunteers Diane B. & Enid Y. who championed the Hug Box concept and helped moved it forward
Thank you to Brenda J for creating the Hug Box booklet that outlines various activities and legacy work.
Lastly thank you to our volunteers who have helped assemble all the material contained in each Hug Box.