November 6, 2020 (TORONTO, ON) Hospice Toronto and Home Hospice Association (HHA) jointly announce today the launch of a pilot project designed to demonstrate the important role that a Certified HHA Death Doula plays in Canada’s current hospice palliative care system. This pilot project supports HHA Death Doula Candidates in the practicum portion of their certification process, and gives our dying community (and their loved ones) the opportunity to experience the benefits provided at end of life by trained Death Doulas who will assist and guide them with legacy-building activities, preparing for death, bed side vigil, and what to do in the moments after death.
Teri Henderson, Director of Clinical Services at Hospice Toronto had heard about Death Doulas and then learned about Home Hospice Association’s unique, in-person approach to this specialized field of training. “From the first day of HHA’s Death Doula Training I knew this was the partnership and organization I was looking for. Like Hospice Toronto, this team puts their heart and soul into everything they do in the care of our dying community. I am excited to work with other HHA Death Doula Candidates to bring this unique and necessary care to our Hospice Toronto clients.”
During her Death Doula training weekend Teri approached Tracey Robertson, Co-Founder of Home Hospice Association with the inspirational idea to form a partnership. “To have a member of the leadership team of Hospice Toronto attend our training weekend was such an honour” Tracey begins. “To then have her see so clearly how we could work together for the very best care of our dying in the GTA was a dream come true”.
Since that training weekend, and under the challenging conditions posed by COVID-19 the two organizations have been working together to create the framework for this pilot project. The pilot’s goal is to ultimately answer the question “why”. Why our current Hospice Palliative Care system will benefit from a Home Hospice Death Doula when our loved one has heard those words… “there is nothing more we can do and it is time to put your affairs in order.
Change does not come easy. Changing the way we die has never been more important than at this time when we are in the midst of a pandemic that has put so many of our community at risk, as well as facing an aging population base.
Just as it takes a village to raise a child, that village is equally important at the end of the journey through life. Together Hospice Toronto and Home Hospice Association will be the change.
For further information and to be kept informed on the progress of the pilot project:
Teri Henderson Tracey Robertson
Hospice Toronto Home Hospice Association