Comfort, Care, Compassion: bringing residential hospice care to Durham Region

There is an undeniable need for palliative care in Durham Region – help us bring residential hospice care to our community!

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Comfort, Care, Compassion: bringing residential hospice care to Durham Region

There is an undeniable need for palliative care in Durham Region – help us bring residential hospice care to our community!


Clarington businesses bring hospice closer to reality

Hospice in Clarington is closer to reality thanks to some whopping donations.

Earlier this week, Algoma Orchards President Kirk Kemp and his wife Sheila, and Algoma Orchards Chief Executive Officer Mike Gibson and his wife Carissa, each contributed $200,000, while Syvan Developments Limited President Ed Vanhaverbeke and his wife Sylvia announced a donation of $100,000 towards Durham Region Hospice – Clarington.

A five-bed residential hospice care centre is being built on Cobbledick Road in Newcastle on land donated earlier this year by the Municipality of Clarington.

According to the Central East Local Health Integration Network, there is an immediate need for 33 residential hospice beds in Durham Region, a number that will continue to increase as the population grows. Despite this need, the region remains one of the only areas in Ontario without a fully operational residential hospice care centre.

Algoma Orchards President Kirk Kemp encourages others to donate.

“I challenge the Clarington business community to join Sheila and myself, as well as the Gibson and Vanhaverbeke families, in our support,” said Kemp. “Whether that means matching our donations or simply giving what you can – every donation counts.”

The new centre will offer private rooms, free parking, unrestricted visiting hours and the ability to live freely. It will feature a great room, dining room, multipurpose room, kitchen, bathroom, reception area, spiritual space, family counselling rooms, an outdoor courtyard with a reflecting pool and walking paths.

The $500,000 donation will support Durham Region Hospice’s $15-million “Comfort, Care, Compassion” capital campaign, which launched in February.


The Oxford Dictionary defines COMFORT as: "a state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint; a person or thing that contributes to physical ease and well-being; the easing or alleviation of a person's feelings of grief or distress; to strengthen, give support, to console".

The term "comfort care" is often used synonymously with the term "palliative care." Comprehensive palliative care, which includes pain and symptom management, support for patient and family, and the opportunity to achieve meaningful closure to life. When comfort care is provided properly, it can ensure a dignified death for most incurably ill patients. Importantly, it also means exploring what gives meaning to a patient at the end of his or her life.

Hospice medical care is designed to provide comfort and dignity when curative therapy is no longer appropriate. It offers control of pain and other symptoms as well as emotional and spiritual support. This approach has been comprehensively developed within the hospice movement which provides specialized medical, nursing and support services for terminally ill patients and their families.

This is the standard of care for the dying that Durham Region Hospice is committed to providing our community through the 10-bed and 5-bed residences in Whitby and Clarington, respectively.

Please support these much-needed residences by donating today to our capital campaign. For ways to donate, visit our website at
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Compassion is an emotional response to the suffering of others. Once felt, it entails subsequent action to help relieve their suffering. Recently, ‘compassion’ has become the flagship concept to be fostered in the delivery of end-of-life care, and a rallying call for social action and public health intervention.

Compassion is not merely a passive sense of pity, it is also about engagement—seeking to assist those whose suffering can be helped by our actions. Compassion has emotional, social and practical dimensions... it goes to the heart of what it is to be human and to exist in relationships, caring for our own welfare and also that of other people.

Compassion has come to occupy an important place within the caring and healthcare disciplines. It is recognised as a critical aspect of the art of nursing and medicine, and is considered essential if patient and family needs are to be met.

Residential hospices can provide the compassionate care that is so necessary to patients and their families who are facing end-of-life issues. There is a need in the Durham Region for residential hospices.

Help Durham Region Hospice in its capital campaign to build much-needed 10-bed and 5-bed hospices by making a donation today.
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