A message from one of our grateful recipients – Allina Health Hospice

Allina Health Hospice Employees

Our 34th Annual Share N’ Care Dinner is quickly approaching. If you haven’t yet set aside the date, we encourage you to mark April 17th in your calendars and join us for an evening of entertainment and philanthropy at the Crow River Winery to celebrate a night of Hospice.

When we plan a fundraising event, planning begins very early and a great deal of thought and time are put into that event. You see, we want the event to be as successful as possible, as our fundraising events make a big impact for the organizations we work with. Traditionally our Share N’ Care Dinner proceeds go directly to support our local hospice connections, and as a result, we thought you might like to hear first hand what your support of this evening means to them.

Monica Stanton, from Allina Health Hospice, recently sat down with us and shared the following:

“Allina Health Hospice has also been known as ConnectCare Hospice, and prior to that, we were founded by Hutchinson Area Health Care as a Volunteer Hospice program in the 1980’s.  We have great pride in our heritage as the hospice created by Hutchinson Area Health Care; having served our community members for 35 years.  Our passion is to enable quality of life, comfort, and dignity to our friends, our relatives and our community neighbors when families are experiencing the closing days, weeks, and months in the journey of a loved one’s life.

We were extremely grateful for the donation and the support of the Hutchinson Health Care Foundation and the entire Hutchinson Community, which helps further strengthen our hospice program.  The donation from the Share N’ Care dinner will help to fund our hospice bereavement program. Allina provides bereavement services to families and caregivers for thirteen months following the death of the hospice patient, with no fee charged for these services. The bereaved person has the option of individual and on-going bereavement visits with a grief counselor, attending a grief support group, and receiving mailings about grief. Some bereaved choose to receive all support services offered. The grief counselor can also assist with finding additional bereavement services offered in the community.

In addition, all donations to Allina Health Hospice also fund our Massage Therapy program, our Music Therapy program and our Aroma Therapy program for hospice patients.  Depending on the needs of the patient, these integrative therapies are offered to help relieve pain or discomfort, stress or anxiety, shortness of breath, feelings of loneliness or isolation, nausea, restlessness, or other types of discomfort that might be experienced at end-of-life.  These therapies are not covered by insurance but are provided with the goal of comfort.

Our community truly benefits from donations such as this, as it enables our hospice program to provide services which are not reimbursed by insurance and we wouldn’t otherwise be able to provide to the patients and families we serve.  In 2018, Allina Health Hospice provided 341 Massage Therapy visits and 222 Music Therapy visits to our patients in the Hutchinson area.  Our Aroma Therapy program is expanding, and we are now able to offer Aroma Therapy patches, inhalers and oils to hospice patients to provide symptom management and quality of life.

Allina’s grief counselor is available to assist community members with finding grief support services.  This may include attending Allina’s Adult Grief Support Group, which is open to any community member who has experienced the death of a loved one. Allina’s grief counselor provides presentations to help educate the public about grief, as well as presentations to area residential facility staff to help them understand the grief they experience as professional caregivers. In addition, Allina reaches out to community members during the holidays, inviting them to attend the Annual Hospice Thanks and Remembrance Service and Tree Lighting.  The Allina grief counselor strives to help community members know that there is support for them during a very difficult time in their lives.”

If you are interested in learning how to apply for a Foundation grant, email or call Rachael Gemuenden at rgemuenden@hutchhealth.com or 320.484.4438.

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