On 21 May 2015, Ian took his first steps in a 5-month journey to raise money for palliative care. Ian’s father, Ted, passed away from cancer in January and received palliative care in his last days. “I am walking to honour my father and those who provide a critical service to people in their last stages of life, as the Aberdeen Palliative Care Society in New Glasgow did for my family,” said Ian.
The goal of Ian’s walk is to raise $25,000, which will go to supporting the Aberdeen Palliative Care Society, the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA), and palliative care associations across Canada. Donations can be made by going to http://chpca.convio.net/Ianswalkforendoflifecare or texting “hospice” to 20222 to make a $10 donation.
The walk, dubbed “Ian’s Walk for End of Life Care,” will pass through major centres that include Fredericton, Montreal, Ottawa, Winnipeg, and Vancouver. “I will be relying on the kindness of those I meet along the way to help me on this journey. I won’t be able to do it without the generosity and support of my fellow Canadians,” said Ian. You can follow Ian’s progress on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ianswalk2015 or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ianswalk2015
The Aberdeen Palliative Care Society in New Glasgow, which provided exceptional care and support for Ted Bos in his last days, is led by Dr. Gerald Farrell, Ms. Rhonda Langille RN and Ms. Debbie Williams RN. They are a large part of the inspiration for the walk, which Ian says “gives me a way to give back, to honor my father, and to say thank you for the wonderful contributions made by palliative care staff.”
Aside from raising money to support palliative care, Ian hopes the walk will also draw attention to this service, which is vital to the local community and the country at large. Palliative care, which is defined as easing (a disease) without curing, is a service that currently only about 1 in 3 Canadians facing end-of- life illnesses have access to, according to Canadian Institute for Health Information. With an aging population and diminishing resources in the Canadian medical system, this service will only become more vital, as it allows people to stay at home longer.