The passing of a loved one can be an incredibly difficult time. Providing compassionate care for those in the final stages of life and their families, Calvert Hospice works to bring comfort and closure. The non-profit organization has been at work in the community since 1984, and has touched countless lives since then. For this week’s interview, Media and Marketing Coordinator Anne Stavely spoke with us about her organization’s mission, and a very touching story about the impact Hospice made on a veteran in its care.
1. Tell us about your organization:
Calvert Hospice cares for those in our community who are living with a serious, life-limiting illness. We provide expert medical care, pain and symptom management, emotional and spiritual support. Care is personalized to the individual needs and wishes of the patient. Calvert Hospice focuses on compassion, dignity and the patient’s quality of life. Patients are supported as they live their final months, weeks or days amid familiar surroundings, pain-free, with dignity, surrounded by their family and friends. Additionally, Calvert Hospice provides bereavement support for all members of our community who are anticipating or grieving the loss of a loved one.
2. What is your favorite “moment”?
One of our favorite "moments" involved helping a Vietnam Veteran with his final wish to be in the newspaper as a part of our “We Honor Veterans” program. The patient's sister saw another veteran in the paper and called to ask if we could do the same for her brother. We weren't sure if the Calvert Recorder would put another veteran in the paper so close to the first one, but thankfully they did. His sister called and said he cried when he saw it. The "We Honor Veterans" program was the first time he had been honored since returning home from Vietnam. He had a lot of shame and regrets about the war and our program helped him though the healing process. He died a few weeks later. It felt good to be part of his welcome home after so many years.
3. What is your biggest challenge?
One of our biggest challenges is the perception that you should only call Calvert Hospice when your loved has only hours to live or is actively dying. We can do so much more, not only for the patient but also their families if they would take advantage of hospice care sooner. Hospice care is not about "giving up"—hospice care is all about how you LIVE up until that last moment.
4. Are there any upcoming events?
We have quite a few events coming up in the near future! For more information on each of these events, please visit calverthospice.org or call 410-535-0892.
2nd Annual Culinary Adventure Saphron’s Restaurant
Friday, April 25
2nd Annual Butterfly Release
Date & Location TBD (Spring)
2nd Annual Southern Maryland Hospice & Palliative Care Conference
College of Southern Maryland
Friday, June 13
2nd Annual Luau Fundraiser
Stoney’s Broomes Island
Thursday, August 14
5. How can people get involved with your organization?
We are always looking for volunteers! We rely on our dedicated, trained volunteers to assist with patient care, bereavement support, administrative tasks, special projects and fundraising. Volunteers also operate the Shoppe for Hospice, our boutique with high quality, new and gently used women’s clothing. For more information on how to become a volunteer, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 410-535-0892.