Happy and Safe Holidays


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Hospice Volunteers of Somerset County, Inc.
Hospice HeartbeatHospice Heartbeat Newsletter




Upcoming Events/Fundraisers 


Karen... Thinking out loud

Again this year we were able to visit all the nursing and rehabilitation facilities in Somerset County to give each patient a card and a flower and a visit from our bear. Three teen volunteers and four adult volunteers helped make this possible.  We thank Tina, Carolee, Kristy, John, Allison, Journey and Hannah for your time and energy. We also thank the Skowhegan Fleuriste for helping to make this possible.

It is fun seeing the patients as they spot our bear mascot marching into their room. One lady did not want to stop hugging it, another wanted to take it home with her, and yet another wanted to hold its hand all day. A male patient met the bear at the end of the hallway in on rehabilitation home. The man very cheerfully informed our bear that he felt it was open hunting season on bears and how much he liked bear meat.  Our bear acted very scared as it inched past this man. The man was delighted to tease and have fun at the bear’s expense. As we walked by the rooms that we had already visited we saw people reading their cards or smelling their flowers. It does not take much to bring a little cheer into a person’s day.

I personally want to wish everyone the merriest of Christmases and a Happy New Year!



We use a lot of poetry here at Hospice to help people open up about what they are feeling…to help them relate…to help them share. Recently at our Annual Lights to Remember Ceremony we also shared poetry and songs. As we go into Christmas we would like to share one more piece. We know grief can be a difficult journey. It is okay to have the feelings you are having. It is okay to grieve and miss loved ones.  We are available to assist you through this journey both now and after the holidays. 

Christmas Memories

When snowfakes dance on winter winds
And colored lights shine Christmas cheer,
When children’s laughter fills the air
And family gathers from far and near,
I try to celebrate with them
And not let my hurting show,
But the empty spaces within my heart,
At this season, seems to grow
‘Till often times it fills the days
And many night times too,
With aching thoughts and memories
Of Christmases I spent with you.
Yes, memories do hurt, its true
But I have this feeling too.
I’m so glad I hold these memories,
For with them I hold part of you.
So for now I’ll wipe away the tears
And join with loved ones dear
To celebrate this Christmas time,
For I know that, in my heart, you’re here

Written by Sandy Siewers in memory of Cassandra Radke


Director's View

We have many programs that we offer, and one that we would like to touch on with the cold weather here is our Pet Peace of Mind. The Pet Peace of Mind program that we have is for many on hospice care, a decline in physical condition impacts a patient’s ability to enjoy socializing and maintaining human relationships over time. Pets often fill that relational void as they offer unconditional love, acceptance, comfort and companionship at a time when it is needed most. Pet Peace of Mind, a national program and the only one in Maine, enables hospice patients to keep their pets at home throughout their end of life journey. The programs works to provide pet food, veterinary care, and other pet care needs at no cost to patients. We also have specially trained volunteers to provide in-home pet care assistance when the patient needs help caring for a pet. We will also assist in re-homing a patient’s pet, should the need arise. With this kind and compassionate support, patients are able to complete their end of life journeys without worrying about their pet’s current or future needs. 

Here is a quick tip on pets this holiday season:

Planes, Trains & Automobiles: Traveling Safely With Your Pets, Hitting the road (or the air) with your pets can make your vacation more fun than ever. But even though you can already feel the sand beneath your toes and taste that Mai Tai, remember that Fido or Fluffy doesn't know he's about to take a trip.

First and foremost, determine whether it's wise to bring Fido along at all. Will he love putting his paws in the sand? Or does the beach allow dogs? Will your cat scratch the hotel furniture to pieces? Sometimes the most pet-friendly option is going it alone and letting your pet stay at a clean, friendly kennel, or hiring a pet sitter. If you choose to get a sitter, make sure you leave them with the right information and pet materials. Take a look at a dog-sitter vacation
checklist to make sure you're not forgetting anything important.

We would like to express our appreciation to Pat Nadeau and Joyce Crane for delivering comfort quilts to our office from Somerset Samplers. Our volunteers love being able to give these blankets to the people they spend time with. Thank you!

From the President

We are always looking for qualified, committed individuals to serve on our board or one of our several committees. If you or someone you know may be interested please contact the Executive Director here. Below you will find our current board members that help to shape the future of our agency.

Tim Curtis, Chairman
Dana Hamilton, Vice-Chairman
Thomas Desjardins, Treasurer
Kim DeMerchant, Secretary
Bill Primmerman
Eunice Thorpe 


In Closing

It is important to remember the mission of Hospice Volunteers of Somerset County, which is: Is to care for those with a life limiting illness, provide support and solace to the grieving, and to educate the community.

Also it is important to remember that,  all our services are provided at no charge to all of the residents that we serve.

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