A 20-year anniversary is always special, especially when celebrating twenty years of service to Lopez Island.
In the early 90s, a group of island residents saw an urgent need for hospice care and home support on Lopez. This collection of caring people had a desire to help their neighbors, and although successful for a while, there was no real plan for recruiting or training others. It did, however, lay the groundwork for Lopez Island Hospice and Home Support.
Many enthusiastic volunteers worked with other programs across the country. They generously shared their training manuals, bylaws, and policies and procedures with our organization.
1997 was a banner year for Lopez Island Hospice and Home Support. We received a $25,000 start-up grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, enabling us to incorporate as a 501(c) (3) organization, and set up training, organized services, and comprehensive programming.
For twenty years, we have been responsive to the Lopez community. Our 50 trained volunteers continue to provide home support to countless Lopez Island neighbors. Fulfilling our mission statement of serving any Lopezian experiencing illness, injury, and/or loss, we’ve enjoyed enormous community support; our caseload has grown; our networks remain rich and responsive; and community members continue to seek our training and remain as volunteers.
As part of this year’s celebration, we honor seven faithful volunteers who participated in our first training 20 years ago and still volunteer today: Gale McCallum, Kathleen Montgomery, Karen Petersen, Maureen Rogers, Jan Sundquist, and Mariette and Murray Trelease.