Radiothon raising funds and awareness for Hospice Renfrew

Valley Heritage Radio’s Jason Marshall, right, and Mike Cloutier, left, hand over a cheque to Hospice Renfrew’s Judy Cobus, Maureen Sullivan-Bentz, and Connie Legg. The money was from contributions during the station’s Kitchen Party Live show last season. The station is partnering with Hospice Renfrew for this year’s Holly Jolly Radiothon Dec. 5.
Valley Heritage Radio’s Jason Marshall, right, and Mike Cloutier, left, hand over a cheque to Hospice Renfrew’s Judy Cobus, Maureen Sullivan-Bentz, and Connie Legg. The money was from contributions during the station’s Kitchen Party Live show last season. The station is partnering with Hospice Renfrew for this year’s Holly Jolly Radiothon Dec. 5.

Annual Valley Heritage Radio Holly Jolly fundraiser set for Saturday, December 5

Dignity. Comfort. Support.

These are just three things offered to patients and families of Hospice Renfrew. And a local radio station is hoping to get the word out to the people of the Ottawa Valley what the hospice is all about, and how important it is to the community.

Valley Heritage Radio is set to host its 6th Annual Holly Jolly Radiothon and Open House Dec. 5, and this year the recipient of all funds raised will be Hospice Renfrew.

“Many people have heard about the hospice, but we’re hoping to be able to educate people about what a phenomenal organization this is, and the great service they offer not only in Renfrew, but across the Valley,” said station manager Jason Marshall. “They offer compassion, care and kindness at a time when people are facing one of the most emotional and difficult stages of their lives. For patients and their families, the hospice offers comfort, support and dignity in a person’s final days and hours. The importance of that cannot be stressed enough.”

In addition to helping spread the word about what services are offered at Hospice Renfrew, the radio station is also hoping listeners across the Ottawa Valley and beyond will offer financial support during the four-hour radiothon. Something the six-bed, non-profit hospice needs in order to keep the lights on and the doors open.

“We offer services all across Renfrew County. We serve the 97,000 residents of Renfrew County and our services are completely free,” said Hospice Renfrew executive director Maureen Sullivan-Bentz. “We are only funded for about 60 per cent of our nursing salaries through the Ministry of Health. The other 40 per cent of the nursing salaries, plus 100 per cent of the operational costs – the hydro, the groceries and all the other bills associated with running the hospice – we are paying for through our fund-raised dollars.”

And how much do they need to keep the doors open?

“Our goals are to raise approximately $500,000 a year in fundraising and donations, and through in-memoriams. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be able to continue to offer these services throughout the county,” said Sullivan-Bentz.

Marshall is hoping the station’s listeners, and the people of the Valley will offer their support at this year’s radiothon.

“Each year Valley folks blow me away with the support they show for local organizations that do amazing work, and need help from the community to keep operating,” said Marshall. “And I hope they keep the phones ringing at this year’s radiothon, because Hospice Renfrew is truly a remarkable place. Tune in and you’ll learn more about why hospice is so vital to not only the Renfrew area, but the entire Ottawa Valley. It’s nice to know a place like this is in your backyard, because you never know when your family will need their help.”

The Holly Jolly Radiothon will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5. Art Jamieson will host the event and people can contact the station at 1-613-432-9873 or 1-888-532-9870. Or they are invited to drop into the open house that day at Valley Heritage Radio (3009 Burnstown Road) and donate in person. The open house will include a silent auction, raffles and live music including the Countrymen, Gail Gavan with Mike Ryan and Kyle Felhaver, Arlene Quinn, Mike Cloutier and other musical guests.

Hospice Renfrew will also be offering tours of their facility that day, and the public is invited to drop in for a visit.

Find out more about Hospice Renfrew at www.hospicerenfrew.ca.

In the past five years, the Holly Jolly Radiothon has raised close to $100,000 for a number of local groups and organizations including The Bonnechere Manor Foundation, the Child Poverty Action Network, the United Way, Recovery Road, the Champlain Community Transportation Collaborative, and last year’s recipient the Renfrew County Suicide Prevention and Crisis Centre.

The event is once again generously sponsored by Ontario Power Generation this year.

For more information about the Radiothon, please contact station manager Jason Marshall at 613-432-9873 or 888-532-9870.