On left standing, Executive Director, Marjorie Joly. Pat Debenham (Volunteer)
On right standing, Debroah Coelho, Volunteer Coordinator and Betty Coulas(Data Entry Clerk)

Renfrew – For the second consecutive year, Hospice Renfrew’s annual Hike For Hospice was replaced with a virtual hike and despite the inability of several hundred participants to get together to raise funds this year’s event was deemed a big success, raising over $53,000.

Hike For Hospice across Canada is traditionally held the first Sunday in May and in Renfrew it is the largest single fundraiser for the six-bed facility. In past years, the Renfrew hike has led the way across Canada in terms of the most amount of money raised by all hospices.

Marjorie Joly, Executive Director at Hospice Renfrew, said while it was not possible to stage the in-person event that has involved upwards of 1,000 people, she was excited with the participation of many people who did their own event that day, helping to raise the $53,000.

“We had wonderful support from the business community and are especially grateful to Ray and Barb Pilon and Bill and Bobbie Sears, the respective owners of Canadian Tire in Pembroke and Renfrew, who were this year’s main sponsors of the hike,” she said.

Ms. Joly said there were also several gold, silver and bronze sponsors who contributed to making the fundraiser a success.

Hospice Renfrew Board Chair Gerald Tracey said he was humbled by the support of the wider community and on behalf of the board of directors, he extended a thank you to everyone who did their part to support the hike.

“COVID-19 has greatly impacted our fundraising endeavours and many events have had to be put on hold, but whenever we do have the opportunity to host an event like the virtual hike, people are very generous to our cause,” he said.

Mr. Tracey extended personal thanks to the Pilons and Sears for being this year’s main sponsors. “There was no hesitation from either couple when they were approached about being the main sponsor,” he said. “Although both couples only took over the Pembroke and Renfrew stores in the recent years, they are quite aware of Hospice Renfrew and the service it provides, and they understand its importance to Renfrew County.

In addition to the support from the business community, there were also 14 teams that registered online as well as many individuals who mailed or dropped off their hike donations.

Like everyone else, Mr. Tracey is looking forward to the end of the pandemic and to a time when people can once again gather for such events as the hike.

There is no cost for any of the programs and services offered at hospice. Hospice Renfrew is a registered charity and depends greatly on community support as the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care currently provides funding for about 50 per cent of the operations.

Ms. Joly expressed her thanks to everyone for their continued faithful support and generosity. “It will make an immediate difference in the lives of the families we serve,” she said.

For more information please contact:
Wendy Hewitt
Clerical Assistant
613-433-3993 ext. 2234
Email: whewitt@hospicerenfrew.ca