From left: Andrew Fox, Dr. Valorie Masuda and Dr. Sue Barr of the Cowichan Hospice House Task Force along with Shelley Kuecks, Palliative Services Coordinator and Past President Mary Ann Deacon in front of the new Cowichan Hospice facility now under construction. (submitted)

From left: Andrew Fox, Dr. Valorie Masuda and Dr. Sue Barr of the Cowichan Hospice House Task Force along with Shelley Kuecks, Palliative Services Coordinator and Past President Mary Ann Deacon in front of the new Cowichan Hospice facility now under construction. (submitted)

Wet weather fails to slow down Cowichan Hospice House construction

The region’s first hospice is taking shape in Duncan’s Cairnsmore neighbourhood

Despite the record rain and snow that has hit the Valley since January, construction of the new Cowichan Hospice House is progressing on schedule.

The region’s first hospice is taking shape in Duncan’s Cairnsmore neighbourhood with opening projected for October 2020.

Construction is being managed by Kinetic Construction with local and Island contractors helping the long held dream become a reality.

The majority of the underground work is now complete in the 10-bed facility, along with the framing of the interior walls, weather-proofing of the outside, and the installation of outside post and beam details.

“Just this past week, the windows and door frames were installed and the house has been connected with Cairnsmore, the adjacent long-term care facility, via a corridor to allow for sharing of food and laundry services,” Hospice spokesperson Zoe Lauckner said.

Once opened, Cowichan Hospice House will offer 24-hour compassionate, professional care, expert pain and symptom management, and support for patients and their families.

Island Health will provide the medical care and operational costs, and Cowichan Hospice will provide the emotional and practical support for patients and families.

The existing Cowichan Hospice office on Gibbins road will remain open and continue to provide free end-of-life and grief support to individuals and families in the Cowichan region.

Cowichan Hospice began fundraising in 2018 and the project has seen incredible support with individual donations ranging from $5 to $250,000. The Cowichan Valley Regional Hospital District were early supporters of the project committing more than $6 million in regional health funding. Fundraising for the Rotary Garden at Cowichan Hospice House continues by the five local Rotary clubs.

Cowichan Hospice House is set to open in the fall and opening day celebrations will be announced later in the year.

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