The Tantramar Hospice Palliative Care
Organization, Inc. (THPCO) is an umbrella organization made up of service
providers and interested individuals who volunteer to advocate for and support
the provision of hospice palliative care services and resources in the
Tantramar region. Hence our logo is an umbrella with our organization’s
initials on it. The Tantramar region
of New Brunswick includes the communities and surrounding areas of:
- Cape Tormentine
- Murray Corner
- Port Elgin
Our web site provides information and links to local, regional, and national resources.
What is Hospice Palliative Care?
Hospice palliative care is a holistic (whole-person) type of health care that aims to relieve suffering and improve the quality of living and dying for terminally ill persons and their loved ones. Hospice palliative care strives to help dying persons and their loved ones:
- Address physical, psychological, social, spiritual and practical issues, and their associated needs, hopes, and fears.
- Prepare for and manage self-determined life closure and the dying process.
- Cope with loss and grief during the illness and bereavement.
Hospice palliative care can be provided in any setting: in hospital, in a nursing home, in a residential hospice, or in the dying person's own home.
- Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association
The Tantramar Hospice Palliative Care
Organization, Inc. (THPCO) is a non-profit, charitable organization, which
advocates for and supports the provision of hospice palliative care services
and resources in the Tantramar region.
- Raising awareness of hospice palliative care through
newspaper articles, public information sessions, special events (e.g.,
hike for hospice), memorial services, etc.
- Educating the public and health care providers about
hospice palliative care through workshops, conferences, community
- Increasing awareness of the hospice palliative care
services and resources available to members of our community, including
how to access them.
- Raising funds to support the provision of grief and bereavement support services in our community.
- Normalizing dying, death, and bereavement.
The History of the Tantramar Hospice
Palliative Care Organization (THPCO), Inc.
In 2003, a small group of interested
individuals met to discuss the hospice palliative care services available in
the Tantramar region. All of the individuals either worked in areas providing
hospice palliative care services or had experience caring for a dying loved one.
The group felt there was a lack of coordinated services in the Tantramar area.
They wanted to work together to improve the hospice palliative care provided to
individuals in the Tantramar region.
Renaissance Sackville - a non-profit
organization sponsored by the town of Sackville - funded a research project
designed to establish base line data for the development, mission and strategic
plan of a community-based hospice palliative care organization called the
Tantramar Hospice Palliative Care Organization. Jane Claxton-Oldfield,
summarized the research in a report entitled, 'A Report and Inventory of Support Services Available to a Hospice
Palliative Care Program in the Tantramar Region' (December 2003).
Summary of Highlighted Achievements
- Formation of THPCO committee, creating a broad, community
- Completion of research report,' A Report and Inventory of Support Services Available to a Hospice
Palliative Care Program in the Tantramar Region'.
- Gaps in, and barriers to, palliative care services in
a small New Brunswick community. Poster presentation of the 2003 research report (see
above) at the 14th Annual Home Care Association Conference in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
- Development of brochure describing hospice palliative
care services available for members of the Tantramar region.
- Financially supported THPCO members to attend
conferences and workshops.
- Created sub-committees for Media/Publicity, Education,
and Grief and Bereavement.
- Organized a grief and bereavement workshop.
- Partnered with Victorian Order of Nurses (VON) to
provide a public information session.
- Provided funding for education to home support workers
to receive the VON palliative care volunteer training program.
- Provided educational presentations to medical students from
Dalhousie University in collaboration with the 'Creative Practice' student
exchange at Mount Allison University.
- Created a library of hospice palliative care resources.
- Hosted a workshop for health care professionals and
trained hospice palliative care volunteers on death, dying and bereavement;
the workshop was entitled, 'It Takes
A Village to Say Good-Bye'.
- Created kits of educational resources and distributed them
to key areas of the community for distribution to dying persons and their
- Developed the THPCO website.
- Incorporated and achieved registered charitable status.
- The THPCO partnered with VON for a community
information session entitled,'Reaching Out a Helping Hand: Hospice
Palliative Care Services in Tantramar'.
- The THPCO partnered with VON for a community information
session entitled, 'Reaching Out a Helping Hand: Hospice Palliative
Care Services in Tantramar'.
- Hosted 85 health care professionals from throughout the
Maritimes for a workshop entitled, ‘Being
the Best We Can Be’, presented by author Liz Crocker.
- Held a public presentation entitled, ‘The Power of Health Care Stories to
Inspire Change’, with author and facilitator Liz Crocker.
- Officially launched the THPCO website with the cutting
of a virtual ribbon.
- The first THPCO grief and bereavement peer support program
was held in the spring. Ten participants attended the six-week program.
- Participated in the ‘Angels Remembered’
fundraising campaign in Sackville, in partnership with Hospice Greater Moncton, raising over
- Held the first annual THPCO ‘Hike for
Hospice’ at the Sackville Waterfowl Park, raising over $1,000.00.
- Re-launched the new THPCO website.
- Participated in the 'Angels Remembered' fundraising campaign in Sackville and Port Elgin, in partnership with Hospice Greater Moncton, raising over $400.00.
- Hosted Sackville's first Death Cafe (an evening of coffee, cake, and conversation about death) at the Black Duck Inn on Bridge Street.
- Organized three-day 'Skills for Healing' Cancer Weekend Retreat in Sackville, led by Dr. Rob Rutledge (radiation oncologist) and Dr. Timothy Walker (contemplative psychotherapist and mindfulness teacher).
- Held second annual THPCO 'Hike for Hospice' in downtown Sackville, raising over $1,200.00
- Produced the first THPCO fundraising calendar
- Participated in the 'Angels Remembered' fundraising campaign in Sackville and Port Elgin, in partnership with Hospice Greater Moncton, raising over $200.00.
- Held third annual THPCO 'Hike for Hospice' in downtown Sackville, raising over $700.00
- Hosted Sackville's second Death Cafe at Campbell's Funeral Home on Bridge Street.
- Produced second THPCO fundraising calendar
- Provided “comfort bags” for family members sitting with dying loved ones at the Westford and Drew nursing homes and the Sackville Memorial Hospital. The bags contain items that
family members may find useful (and may not have with them), such as a toothbrush,
toothpaste, tissues, lip balm, bottle of water, mints, notebook and pen, gum,
chewy bar, deck of cards, and a puzzle book.
- THPCO accepts donations of items to be included in "comfort bags" from the Chignecto District Women's Institute.
- THPCO sponsors "End-of-Life Issues" event at the Maritime Conference Centre in Sackville. The event, featuring three experts in end-of-life matters (Dr. Timothy Christie, Dr. Pamela Mansfield, and Dr. John Ross), was attended by more than 85 health care providers and members of the general public.
- THPCO establish a liaison with the Cumberland County Hospice & Palliative Care Society in Amherst, Nova Scotia.
- THPCO accepts donations from fundraising recitals (A Springtime Bouquet of Music & Poetry) to be used to help fund a workshop for healthcare professionals on the topic of how to effectively support lgbtq2 individuals at the end of life.
- Hosted Sackville's third Death Cafe at Campbell's Funeral Home on Bridge Street.
- THPCO sponsors educational event at the Maritime Conference Centre in Sackville. The event featured Dr. Kimberly Acquaviva who presented on LGBTQ-Inclusive Care: What patients, healthcare professionals, and
community members need to know, and Dr. Pamela Mansfield who presented on advance care planning. Approximately 60 individuals (health care providers and members of the general public) attended the event.
- Cumberland Car Club donates proceeds from the 50-50 raffle held at the annual Cumberland Car Club Car show in June to the THPCO.
- 2018 marks the tenth anniversary of THPCO's grief and bereavement program.