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Lakeside Hospice volunteers at the annual open house and luncheon to celebrate Hospice Awareness Month. Photo by U. Glidewell

Lakeside Hospice held their annual open house and luncheon to share what they do for the community and celebrate their volunteers, patients, and Hospice Awareness Month.

Lakeside Hospice was founded in 1991 as a non-profit hospice serving eight counties in Central Alabama. They not only serve patients with Medicare or insurance, but also patients regardless of their ability to pay.

“So many people have helped us that believe in our mission,” said Paul Garing, Executive Director of Lakeside Hospice. “We help those that can’t pay and help them stay close to home and close to family.”

Lakeside Hospice provides medical care, pain management and emotional and spiritual support tailored to patient’s needs. Support is provided to family members through their respite care program for caregivers.

Garing says that their “comfort care” programs set them apart. Those programs include massage therapy, chaplain service, support group meetings including monthly Alzheimer’s/Dementia Group, twice monthly Caregiver Support Group, and twice monthly Grief Share and Support meetings. They also offer music and memory therapy, which has been shown to shift moods and stimulate positive interactions with Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients.

Hospice volunteers also assist with pet needs including feeding, walking, veterinarian visits and medicines. They also assist with adoption services when a patient wants someone to care for their pet.

Currently, Lakeside Hospice has 31 volunteers that provide direct care, respite care, comfort care programs, general maintenance, accounting and office services.

“They are a wonderful group of people, and help wherever we need them,” Garing said.

Garing said that over the last year, volunteers have saved them over $118,000 that would have been paid out for services.

Being one of 10 hospice non-profits in the state, Lakeside Hospice is dependent on donations and grants to offer “end of journey” care. Over the past year, two different foundations, including the United Way, have awarded grants to Lakeside Hospice. Along with donations from local companies such as Benjamin Moore, Gilreath Printing and Garrison Steele, have allowed Lakeside Hospice to renovate the interior of their building and continue offering care to those who can’t afford to pay.

Lakeside Hospice will be having a Garden Dedication for the Jan Trotter Serenity Garden for her many years of support and service. The dedication will be at Lakeside Hospice on Friday, Nov. 15 at 11 a.m. at 4010 Masters Rd. in Pell City.

For more information about Lakeside Hospice, call 205-884-1111.

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