Join 8th Annual Hike for Hospice Palliative Care!

OTTAWA, April 30 /CNW Telbec/ - On May 2, 2010, thousands of Canadians of all ages will gather on walking paths, parks, and hiking trails across Canada for the 8th Annual Hike for Hospice Palliative Care. The event helps to shine a spotlight on the valuable work done by hospice palliative care professionals and volunteers across the country. "I am in awe of the extraordinary care, compassion and understanding provided by the hospice palliative care community. I will never forget the incredible kindness and care that was given to my mother," stated Peter Mansbridge, Honorary Chair of the Hike for Hospice Palliative Care.

Although organized as a national event, each Hike is hosted locally. The Hike for Hospice Palliative Care organizers individualize their Hikes with a wide variety of activities, such as routes through memorial gardens, celebration of life ceremonies, releasing doves or balloons or serenading hikers with live bagpipe music. As well, 100% of the funds raised through the Hike remain in the local community, thanks to funding provided by Hike for Hospice Palliative Care founding sponsor, The GlaxoSmithKline Foundation, and compassion level sponsor Bayshore Home Health.

"Not only does this event allow for local hospice palliative care organizations to fundraise, the Hike is a fun way to raise awareness of the need for hospice palliative care and get your community involved in the cause," stated Sharon Baxter, Executive Director, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA).

"With an aging population in Canada, the demand for hospice palliative care services will continue to increase," stated Wendy Wainwright, President, CHPCA. She continued, "Almost 75% of deaths in Canada are due to chronic illness or progressive life-threatening disease and these Canadians and their families could truly benefit from quality hospice palliative care." Yet, at best, not even four in ten has access to that care. With a predicted increase in deaths to more than 330,000 by the year 2020, access to hospice palliative care is becoming more critical with every passing year.

"The Hike is an important event for raising awareness of, and funds for, hospice palliative care programs and services across the country," agreed Karen Chow, The GlaxoSmithKline Foundation. "The GSK Foundation is pleased to be the founding sponsor for the Hike for Hospice Palliative Care and we are proud of our long-standing commitment to end-of-life care."

The Hike for Hospice Palliative Care is coordinated by the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, the national association which provides leadership in hospice palliative and end-of-life care.

A complete list of all participating Hike sites and additional information is available on the CHPCA website at www.hikeforhospice.com.

SOURCE Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association

For further information: For further information: Jennifer Kavanagh, Communications Officer, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, Telephone: 1-800-668-2785 ext. 229, E-mail: jkavanagh@bruyere.org; Linda Truglia, Project Coordinator (Hike for Hospice Palliative Care), Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, Telephone: 1-800-668-2785 ext. 228, E-mail: ltruglia@bruyere.org


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