August PCSBV Newsletter 2022

The PCSBV Bulletin August 2022

Death Doulas in Palliative Care

In completing these roles, Death Doulas add another support to palliative care teams across the country. They do not serve as a replacement to hospice care team members, nor do they seek to dissuade individuals from accessing hospice care. Death Doulas are thus increasingly regarded as valuable members of end-of- life care teams who make an important contribution to assisting a patient with their progression through a life- limiting illness. While the majority of Death Doulas provide support after an individual has been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness, some Death Doulas are asked to assist in advance health care planning. Many Death Doulas encourage healthy individuals to consider their own end-of-life experience before facing death. Death Doulas often offer guidance to individuals considering their wishes for their dying process before beginning this process. This can ensure that a patient’s wishes are better accommodated when they reach the end of their life. Today, more people are seeking out Death Doulas to be a part of their end-of-life care plan. This is largely because Death Doulas are trained to offer personalized care that caters to a patient’s specific needs, beliefs and desires. Their non-judgemental support of a patient’s wishes can play an instrumental role in improving the quality of an end-of-life experience. In this way, Death Doulas are an important part of hospice care as they contribute to the underlying mission of ensuring an individual with a life-limiting illness experiences death in comfort and with dignity.

Imagine how you would feel if you or one of your loved ones was diagnosed with a serious illness. The feelings of being scared, isolated or overwhelmed that come with such a diagnosis are a reality for many around the world. However, individuals and families facing life-limiting illness are often surrounded by a team of professionals to guide them through the end-of-life care process. ‘ Death Doulas’ are relatively new to hospice communities around the world. Beginning in the early 2000s, the term was used in New York to refer to volunteers who were paired with individuals with a life-limiting illness to assist them in coping with the dying process. Today, the term ‘Death Doula’ is used similarly. Death Doulas are an important member of palliative care teams across the world. Their primary role is to assist patients with a life- limiting diagnosis and their family members in preparing spiritually and emotionally for the dying process. In doing so, they raise the standard of end-of-life care offered to patients and their loved ones. Death Doulas provide a wide variety of services to support individuals with a life-limiting illness and their loved ones. Often, they serve as a bridge between the medical and non-medical members of a patient’s end-of-life care team. In addition, Death Doulas work closely with patients to determine a plan for support at the patient’s time of death. Death Doulas can also serve as a support for a patient’s loved ones by offering practical training for family caregivers. This training can assist caregivers in responding to difficulties a patient might be experiencing as their illness progresses. Death Doulas also provide needed relief and companionship for family caregivers who are coping with the difficulties of assisting an ill member of their family. After the passing of an individual, Death Doulas are available for grief support and can also provide assistance in funeral or memorial planning.

Learn more: End of Life Doula Association



This program is on summer pause until September 7, 2022. Email: to register and receive the zoom link.



Monday | 11:00 am to 2:00 pm

Email: Bill Harder welcomes clients at the Banff Canmore Community Foundation, 214 Banff Avenue.

PCSBV would like to welcome Pauline Giglio as our new Office Coordinator!

Pauline moved from Ontario to Canmore seven years ago and is transitioning to her new role at PCSBV from the Bow Valley Chamber of Commerce. Her duties cover all things administration and events related for PCSBV. Feel free to contact her with questions or ideas via email at or by calling 403-707-7111. She is looking forward to meeting PCSBV friends and supporters at the 4th Annual PCSBV Golf for Hospice Tournament on August 25th at Stewart Creek Golf & Country Club.

Our Grief Support Walking Groups are on pause for the month of August. GRIEF SUPPORT WALKING GROUPS STAY TUNED for more information in our next newsletter or on our social media for when they will start up again.

if you have question you ca contact Bill at


Thank you sponsors!

Co-operators - Moir Insurance Services Inc.

McElhanney Stonewaters

Avens Gallery The Prairie Creek Inn

Osborne Interim Management

Mercedes-Benz Country Hills

The Fairmont Banff Springs Willow Stream Spa

Bow Valley BBQ

Wild Life Distillery

Origins At Spring Creek

The Rimrock Hotel

Keill & Co Inc.

Thank you patrons!

Lee & Les LeQuelenec Family Foundation

Crossway Community Thrift Store

Bob & Marilese MacDonell

Bob MacArthur

Brian Callaghan & Family

Clint Cawsey

Howard & Angela Gorman

Banff Springs Golf Club Members

Upcoming Event The Needs of Aging

September 27, 2022 7:00 pm

PCSBV volunteer, Karl Wahl, will be presenting a talk on the needs of the aging.

Open to the public Masks are required to enter Origin at Spring Creek

Origin at Spring Creek 808 Spring Creek Drive Canmore, AB, T1W 0K3


Help today for support tomorrow!

The Palliative Care Society of the Bow Valley offers essential services to those in our community experiencing life-altering changes, including terminal diagnoses, life-limiting illness, and grief.

Together with supporters like you we can achieve our goals for better palliative care services and programs delivered to communities throughout Alberta with our focus in the Bow Valley.



$42 per month

$500 per year

Giving $42 per month supports the training of a client-care volunteer

Giving $500 per year supports workshops on navigating grief and loss

Our volunteers make a Difference in client’s lives on a weekly basis

For health care workers Town staff Parks staff Parents, teachers, child support staff The Bow Valley community


Click on the link >> Donate today! Online at and click on the “Donate” button. Send a cheque to: Here are the ways you can make a donation: Palliative Care Society of the Bow Valley, PO Box 40113, Canmore Crossing, Canmore, AB, T1W 3H9 .

General Donations are used for programs currently with the greatest need of your financial support. Tributes honour a family member, friend, or loved one. Building donations support creating a residential hospice home accessible to the Bow Valley community. Monthly donations will ensure constant support throughout the years.

For more information contact Kristin Fry, Fund Development at or call (403) 707-7633

Donations of $25 or more will receive a charitable receipt.

New Approaches to End-of-Life Care

Hospice care is a vital form of health care. It ensures that those nearing the end of their life experience comfort and dignity as they navigate the process of dying. Hospice care is continuously evolving as the way we think about death changes. New methods of providing care to those with a life-limiting illness continue to emerge. These new approaches to coping with serious illness can go a long way towards guiding an individual and their loved ones through the processes of death and grief.

Legacy Therapy

Legacy therapy or dignity therapy is a new and increasingly popular form of palliative care. Legacy therapy involves multiple sessions between a patient with a life-limiting illness and a doctor, counsellor, social worker or other health care professional. During these sessions, patients talk about all aspects of their life. Primarily, legacy therapy is used to determine a patient’s end-of-life goals, or things they hope to accomplish with the time they have left. This can give individuals with a serious illness hope and a sense of purpose that they may have lost after their diagnosis. Legacy therapy sessions are often also used to determine what a patient would like to leave behind to mark their life. In this way, legacy therapy guides individuals with a serious illness to create something tangible, perhaps a memory box, that tells their life story and shares loving messages with family members. Such a memento may become a lasting treasure for an individual’s loved ones. As well, a patient may share stories, knowledge or moments from their life that can be handed down. These can serve as precious memories for a patient’s loved ones. Legacy therapy can also involve discussing topics that the patient has never talked about before. Sometimes, a patient will express what their loved ones mean to them. In other cases, patients will share difficult parts of their life, whether that be discussing a traumatic experience, regrets in life or a lost relationship. These conversations with health care professionals allow patients to feel at peace with their past, which in turn allows them to focus on the time they have left with their loved ones. Additionally, having another person listen to a patient’s story can highlight significant moments or relationships to a patient and thus affirm the meaning and importance of that patient’s life.

Death Cafes

Since 2011, communities around the world have been coming together to host conversation and reflection about death. However, throughout the pandemic, Death Cafes have garnered more attention. A Death Cafe is a group of people that meet to talk about topics associated with death. These topics can be centered around questions such as “Where would you like to be when you die?”, “What things make for a good death?”, “How would you like to be remembered?” and “What would you like your funeral to look like?”. Death Cafes encourage people to make the most of their lives without imposing a specific agenda on group discussion. The conversations are respectful and confidential and serve as a tool to destigmatize the process of death, something every individual will one day face. Death Cafes are not a form of counselling or grief support, meaning that they differ from many resources currently available to seriously ill patients and their loved ones. As such, anyone can attend a Death Cafe. However, as their focus is to increase awareness about death, Death Cafes and the discussions they promote are especially relevant to patients with a life-limiting illness and their family members. Frank and honest conversations can reduce the fear and uncertainty that are often associated with death. In this way, Death Cafes can assist individuals with a life-limiting illness and their loved ones in preparing emotionally for the process of death.

Death Cafe Canmore Facebook Find a local cafe:

Cathy Jones Volunteer Extraordinaire!

We want to hear from you! Please take a couple of minutes to answer a few short survey questions so we can learn more about you and how we can improve your reader experience. PCSBV NEWSLETTER READER SURVEY The Speakers Series has been a great success and that is in part due to Cathy’s help. She believes strongly in the immeasurable value that PCSBV brings to the community and the Speakers Series tool is just one way the organization and Cathy can offer support to clients and families. We are thankful for Cathy’s giving nature and the commitment she gives to us. Give her a high five if you happen to see her around! It gives the public an opportunity to learn, change perspectives about death and have questions answered right away. “I love assisting people in conversations that are difficult to start, carry deeper, and then bring to conclusion with some understanding of what they are going through,” says Cathy, “It is rewarding to see someone smile because they realize they did their best or to help someone have a ‘light bulb’ go on in their head that you know will bring a positive outcome.”

Cathy Jones has called Bow Valley home for more than 30 years and has involved herself in helping the community by volunteering with Palliative Care Society of the Bow Valley. Originally, she joined the Society as a volunteer to help it form the Communications and Executive Committee. Then, in the years that followed, she helped create the Speaker Series with the Executive in 2018. Cathy says, “It was meant to reach out to the residents of the Bow Valley to answer their questions and learn about palliative care and about all the goals of the Society.” Cathy has been an integral part of the program as one of the first to organize a presentation in 2018 and now as a presentation moderator. The Speakers Series is a tool for residents to talk and listen and have conversations about all the issues surrounding death.


The C. S. Lewis Signature Classics: An Anthology of 8 C. S. Lewis Titles: Mere Christianity, The Screwtape Letters, Miracles, The Great Divorce, The Problem of Pain, A Grief Observed, The Abolition of Man, and The Four Loves

Use the camera on your phone to use the QR Code. Or click the Take Survey button. Either one will take you to the survey.

Truth and Reconciliation Day - September 30 National Hospice Palliative Care Day for Children - October 13 National Bereavement Day – November 15 Upcoming Special Dates

Palliative Care Society of the Bow Valley

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