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Written By CONSTANCE SCRAFIELD
Called the Diamond in the Hills “because Bethell Hospice is a jewel in our community,”
this is an annual fund raiser, a fashion show, in support of Bethell Hospice. The Diamond was held this year, last Saturday, June 9, at the Devil's Pulpit Golf Course in Caledon. This year's total was a tremendous $91,000.
It was last year, according Bonnie Ledson, chair person of the Diamond in the Hills Fashion Show committee, that a simple four-ladies group dove in to make the annual day's event wonderful. Last year was their first go at running it.
Mrs Ledson related their initial meeting to the Citizen: “We got together and I told them we were going to raise $50,000. They looked at me as though I had four heads, but we raised $70,000 last year. I really wanted to beat that $70,000 mark this year.”
In addition to Mrs Ledson, the committee members are: Marj Dennis, Debbie Glover and Judy Petursson.
Ms Glover is the owner of Studio 49, in Georgetown, a boutique store of elegant clothing, accessories and the rest, that aims to cover the fashion needs “from head to toe” of every customer. The clothing for the fashion show was provided by Studio 49. It was Mrs Ledson who introduced the Georgetown store to the event and Debbie Glover, the owner, was enthusiastically generous in her appreciation and support for the Diamond in the Hills.
The lunch followed along with the three sets of the fashion show: first, there was the casual look, smart but ready to hike and even have a glass of wine after the adventure.
Next was Set Two: Ladies Doing Lunch and Business – a stunning array of how to impress your colleagues or potential clients with neat skirts, elegant blouses, simple lines to the dresses; trousers to flaunt the figure.
Lastly, along with dessert, was Set Three: Glamour Wear: beautiful close fitting or flowing dresses for evening wear, both floor length and cocktail. A delightful two piece jacket and long skirt, embossed with golden thread, a possible perfection for the mother of the bride. Shoes to match throughout.
There were Glitter Boxes to purchase, each with a gift and a chance for $1,000 shopping spree at Studio 49. Raffle tickets for prizes; a silent and a live auction, including a pig roast for 50 people. Layne, the Auctionista, was in charge of pumping up the energy and keeping the bids coming, with a brand of entertaining auctioneering that was new to most of the attendees but which certainly electrified the live auction.
The music for the event to walk the models in and act as emphasis to the whole show was provided by Bill from Innerphase Productions.
A substantial list of donors and sponsors gave to the event, to pay for it, all culminating in the very fine total at the end.
The patrons of the event were delighted with its charm and fun. One lady stopped to speak to Ms Ledson, as she was taking a moment to talk with the Citizen. The lady insisted that she is coming back next year and wanted to book a table for ten on the spot. Ms Ledson assured her of the committee's best intentions but mentioned that the event has been sold out of its 225 places since March.
“We can't find any venue bigger than this and the golf course does such a good job. Everyone is so nice,” was Ms Ledson's comment.
Bethell Hospice, very much beloved of many, is actually a relatively recent innovation in this area. Named for its founder, Lorna Bethell, who believed that “every person has the right to die with dignity, free from pain, in the comfort and embrace of family and friends.”
It was Ms. Bethell's experience in hearing the war stories her husband, Tony, brought home as a survivor of “the Great Escape of WWII” that demonstrated to her the need for no one to die “a lonely death.”
She likewise gained a thorough understanding of the stress involved in constant hospital attendance “as she slept upright in a hospital chair by the bedside of her step-son, Jamie, prior to his death.”
When Tony died of cancer with herself at his side, she realized how important it is for families to be at the bedside of their loved ones without the responsibility of day to day home care.
It was finally, when her daughter, Elisabeth, a VON nurse, told her how much her patients would benefit from hospice care that “the idea for Bethell Hospice was born.”
Ms Bethell's original gift to establish the hospice of $2,000,000 was matched by the government of Ontario through the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care. Thus inspired, other financial leaders in the community offered gifts to assure the successful construction of the hospice. Within six years, it was was opened in Inglewood in April, 2010.
Once the Bethell Hospice was operational, Ms. Bethell was determined to assure it would always be funded to offer “residential and community care at no cost to residents, participants or their families.” She herself was “actively involved, sharing time with the residents and their families until the time of her death in 2013 ...at 84 years old.”
(Quotations from Bethell Hospice website.)
As to why Ms Ledson cares so deeply to be supportive of the hospice, she declared her admiration for its founder.
“Lorna Bethell was so giving. Every Tuesday, she and Liz Birnie (Honorary Patron with the Foundation Board) came to the hospice to pour a cup of tea to any visitor. She did so much and, to me, she was a friend and person in the community that I admired.”
Post date: 2018-06-14 11:52:50
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