Members of the fundraising team for a new Hospice House celebrate a big step in the project – putting up a sign to mark the future home of the house.

Hospice’s dream house coming true

The plan is to break ground in the spring on the property at 402 Evergreen Road

The Campbell River Hospice Society will see its dream come true later this year.

Thanks to an army of volunteers and some generous donors, the Hospice Society will be building its dream home within the next couple of months.

The plan is to break ground in the spring on the property at 402 Evergreen Road, which was donated by the city to the Hospice Society in September. The property is situated next door to what will be the new Campbell River Hospital.

The 2,476 square foot house will provide a home-like setting with a kitchen, a library, counselling offices, a multi-purpose room, a clinic and an outdoor courtyard.

The Hospice Society is also hoping to work with Island Health to, in the future, possibly provide end-of-life beds. The facility will be constructed to so that an addition to house end-of-life beds can be accommodated.

The project has been made possible thanks to a band of community members who stepped up to help after the Hospice Society received notice that it would have to relocate from its home in the building next to the curling club.

While Hospice is currently operating out of an old home on Dogwood Street near the Evergreen Seniors Home, it’s just a temporary fix.

But the society’s long-term vision was made a reality after local lawyer Brian Stamp saw an article published in the Mirror on Oct. 3, 2013 outlining the society’s dream for a Hospice House.

Stamp called upon four business associates – D’Arcy Frankland, Jim Dobinson, George Stuart and Gary Griffin – for help. The group settled on building a brand new, purpose built facility that would provide enough space to accommodate current operations as well as provide expanded service in the future.

The process began with an extensive search for a suitable site. With the help of then city councillor Andy Adams, the group secured the land donation on Evergreen. The property is valued at $194,011 and fees and charges associated with developing the property are estimated at $35,000 to $45,000.

City council also agreed to provide grants-in-aid to cover fees and charges associated with the project such as rezoning, development and legal costs.

Funds to build Hospice House are being raised through a capital fundraising team made up of the original five organizers, as well as Kent Moeller, Craig Willet, Jens Rolinski, Julie Collis, Brett Giese (construction manager), Erwin Portmann, Dan Wickham, Jill Hanson (project administrator), Iona Wharton and Dave Ludvigson.

While Hospice House will be looking to expand its operations, the society will also continue its current service offerings from the house.

Hospice provides compassionate companionship to those who are dying and support to families dealing with the grief of losing a loved one.

Counsellors help terminal clients reflect on their lives and capture experiences and memories through scrapbooking, writing, audio and visual storytelling.

Hospice House is expected to open its doors this fall.