Victoria Hospice faces pressures on grief counselling service
Walkers participate in the 2018 Hike for Hospice walk. (CTV Vancouver Island)
Victoria Hospice is hoping the community can help the charity keep up with demand for its grief counselling program by supporting its fundraising walk this weekend.
The team says it needs to expand its bereavement care. The service is facing pressure now and it's only expected to grow with our aging population.
Right now, people in need of counselling are being told they'll have to wait several weeks until a counsellor can see them.
The director of fundraising says it's important people have access to counselling immediately.
Money raised at the Hike for Hospice on Sunday will help cut the wait.
Tom Arnold says anyone who has experienced a death, especially when it's someone close to them, will know: "Your whole world stops."
"You don't know what to do," he says. "You don't know what to say. Your friends often don't know how to support you. Having instant access to someone who knows what you're going through, who understands and can help guide the way is so important."
Victoria Hospice provides end-of-life care, supporting the entire family. It relies on community donations for half of its annual operating expenses.
The annual 3.5-kilometre walk raises money to support the charity's programs.
Hike for Hospice is at Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria on May 5, starting at 9 a.m.
Staff hope to raise $40,000.