"Tree of Lights" hospice fund-raiser Friday | VailDaily.com

"Tree of Lights" hospice fund-raiser Friday

Susie Johnson/Special to the Daily

Each year Mountain Hospice’s fund-raiser, “Tree of Lights” celebrates the holiday season, providing an opportunity to remember someone special.

This year, tree-lighting ceremonies will be held in Eagle on Friday at 6:30 p.m. and in Edwards on Monday at 6:30. The names of those remembered and honored will be read, hot cider will be served and music will be provided by Mountain Harmony. Everyone is invited to attend.

“We are committed to make a difference for seriously ill and dying patients and their families. We provide clinical, spiritual and emotional support assuring dignity and grace to the very last moment.”

This is the mission statement of Mountain Hospice, which was begun in the Vail Valley in 1990 by a handful of dedicated volunteers, and incorporated in 1991 as a nonprofit, volunteer, service organization. In order to provide the necessary skilled medical personnel to offer full services to our patients, Mountain Hospice affiliated with the Vail Valley Home Health and in May 2001 became Vail Valley Home Health and Mountain Hospice, a Medicare-certified and licensed hospice. Mountain Hospice operates under the auspices of Vail Valley Medical Center Foundation.

The Hospice movement was founded in England in the 1960s by Dame Cicely Saunders, who told her patients, “You matter to the very last moment of your life, and we will do all we can not only to help you die peacefully, but to live until you die.” Here are some goals of hospice care:

– Allow the patient to maintain dignity, respect and control over his or her life.

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– To live the final days pain-free and prepare for death in his or her own way.

– To have involvement and support of loved ones.

– To access the highest quality compassionate care available through hospice.

– To provide home-based comprehensive services for the terminally ill and a community resource for people in grief.

– To focus on caring, not curing, with pain management, emotional and spiritual support through a team oriented approach.

For more information on Hospice, call Mountain Hospice at 569-7459. Mountain Hospice is located in the Edwards Medical Building.