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Team captains meet ahead of annual Hike for Bethell Hospice

This year's hike is taking place on May 5


Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The Caledon community is beginning to get ready for the annual Hike for Bethell Hospice. 

Now in its 14th year, the annual hike is a key fundraiser for Bethell Hospice, the Inglewood-based non-profit that provides free hospice residence care and community programs.

Nicole Hand, Bethell Hospice Foundation's Executive Director, explained that in order to keep Bethell Hospice's services free, the foundation must now raise $1.7 million per year. 

“It's about the care… we want to make sure as a foundation that the hospice (staff) have all of the resources that they need to do their job,” said Hand. “This is why we hike.”

The fundraising goal for this year's hike is $245,000. It's a big goal, but one the community has shown it has potential to reach — last year's hike raised over $224,000.

Hand explained she encourages people to hike in memory or in honour of someone when they come to the hike. Each hiker gets a heart sticker they can write someone's name on, and at the end of the hike, they can add it to a big wall full of theirs and others' heart stickers. 

“We are really looking forward to another great year,” said Hand of this year's hike. 

Hand shared these and other remarks at a March 20 meeting of Hike for Bethell Hospice team captains. The meeting took place at local coffee shop Coywolf Coffee. 

Each year, many people take on the role of team captain for the hike. Captains are responsible for leading fundraising efforts and getting team members registered for the hike. Registration for this year's Hike for Bethell Hospice is free. 

Anyone interested in starting a team or joining a team for this year's hike can visit, where they can find links to the official Hike for Bethell Hospice website.

Prospective donors and sponsors can find all the information they need at that link as well. 

At the team captains' meeting, people shared why they were hiking.

Many told stories of beloved family members and friends, and others spoke of their strong belief in hospice care and the good it does for the community.

Over 160 people are already signed up for this year's hike, and Hand said it's a promising start.

She said she has no doubt the fundraising goal for this year's hike can be met. 

This year's hike is on May 5 and begins at 8 a.m. at the Lloyd Wilson Centennial Arena in Inglewood.

This date coincides with the beginning of National Hospice & Palliative Care Week. 

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