Victoria Hospice will have funds for end-of-life care, and children and youth in Greater Victoria will have access to bereavement counselling thanks to the Gordy Dodd Walk for Peace. The walk happened on Sunday, July 27, 2014, and raised over $30,000.
The total raised included $28,000 donated by the Telus Victoria Community Board and donations from Telus employees which were matched by Telus. Ray Lawson, Telus General Manager, presented the cheque to Gordy Dodd. The majority of the Telus funds will be used to support “Touchstones”, the Victoria Hospice counselling program that helps young people deal with the loss of loved ones including parents, grandparents, siblings and friends.
Touchstones is a no-charge program that brings grieving children together to share their experiences and learn about grief, death and dying. Through art and play therapy, children recognize and accept their own feelings. Children often feel isolated as their friends and schoolmates are not experiencing the same losses. Parents are dealing with their own grief and are ill-equipped to meet the emotional needs of children during the end-of-life process. Each eight-week program provides a weekly group session with a trained counsellor.
“Children and youth are connected with almost every obituary in the newspaper. They have lost a beloved grandparent, parent, friend or sibling. The Touchstones program helps them realize that it is “OK” to be sad and helps them to understand about grief,” says Mischelle vanThiel, CEO & Executive Director of Victoria Hospice.
Every year, Victoria Hospice provides end-of-life care and counselling for thousands of people in Greater Victoria facing advancing illness, death and bereavement.
See more photos from the walk in the photo gallery below.