The five Rotary Clubs in the Cowichan Valley have come together to take on the project of financing and building an idyllic garden to be sited with the new hospice facility that will be located along side the Cairnsmore long term hospital in Duncan.
The $325,000 project, which came together in record time, will see about $195,000 in fundraising by the Rotary Clubs, as well as about $130,000 contributed in labour, machinery and equipment and other in-kind offerings.
The five clubs involved are: South Cowichan, Duncan, Duncan Daybreak, Chemainus and Ladysmith.
Rotary Area 5 Assistant Governor Gay Wise said in an interview that she was amazed how quickly the initiative gained support among the five clubs.
The idea of getting on board with the project had been informally discussed by the South Cowichan Club, which had provided some seed money to the Cowichan Hospice Task Force.
It was then up to Wise in her position as Assistant Area Governor for Rotary to pull together the clubs to ‘sell’ the idea.
A presentation on the project was made to the five presidents by Rob Hutchins, Hospice Task Force chair in September of last year, followed by a meeting in late November to review issues and then the final meeting in December when the clubs made the decision to proceed.
“I remember standing in that meeting, getting my thoughts together to persuade the clubs to participate, when I realized they were already onboard and didn’t have to be persuaded,” Wise said. “Tears came to my eyes; I was so happy the clubs were so enthusiastic about the project.”
The gardens will be designed as an extension of the hospice facility where patients and their families can seek a pleasant, relaxing environment together. Shade trees, walkways and benches will be spread throughout the garden.
Partick Hrushowy is a forty-five year veteran of journalism and the communications field and he is the Editor of the Cowichan Post.