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Liz Devins with daughters Amelia and Belle (Courtesy Photo)

A Nurturing Day at Camp H.O.P.E. Retreat

Carlsbad CA – A sunshiny, nurturing day of making friends, hugging animals, taking a hayride and participating in other therapeutic activities such as drumming and a ceremonial tree planting awaits children and families grieving the loss of a loved one at Hospice of the North Coast’s (HNC’s) Camp H.O.P.E. on June 14, 2014. The retreat takes place from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., at Green Oak Ranch, 1237 Green Oak Road, Vista. Thanks to generous sponsorship, Camp H.O.P.E. is free; activities, meals and t-shirts are provided on a complimentary basis to all campers. Register at www.hospicenorthcoast.org or 760.431.4100.

According to HNC’s Hope Bereavement Center Director Ti Johnson, “The name Camp H.O.P.E. reflects its purpose as a ‘Healing Outdoor Play Experience’ that enables children seven years of age and older to bond with peers who are grieving the loss of parents and other family members. Kids can dive into child-centered fun in a nurturing environment. Adults can enjoy healing-touch, spa-like therapies such as yoga and massage that help them release grief while they learn how to care for themselves and their children during this challenging time. The day offers people a way to connect within their families and with other families as they find their way to a new normal.”

 Camp  therapy dog (Courtesy Photo)

Camp therapy dog (Courtesy Photo)

Johnson adds, “We are excited to offer a new feature in 2014: a one-hour performance by ‘Magic Mike’ Stilwell that is certain to delight family members of all ages.”

Shortly after losing her beloved daughter, Claire, to brain cancer at age six, Carlsbad’s Liz Devins, along with her husband and Claire’s four siblings, found understanding and acceptance at Camp H.O.P.E. She confides, “Our grieving has been a family process, but it is also intensely individual. Camp H.O.P.E. offered so much for each of us, from art projects where the kids could express their emotions to exercises, stories and relaxation techniques that benefited all of us. We ‘planted’ the flagpole we created at camp in our home garden spot we dedicated to Claire. It is very special to us.”

Camp H.O.P.E. is made possible with the support of HNC’s 2014 Hope Bereavement Center sponsors: Gumpert Foundation, Coastal Community Foundation, Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians and HNC Board President Bobbie Hoder. For more information about HNC’s ongoing bereavement programs, available at no cost to community members, contact tjohnson@hospicenorthcoast.org.

About Hospice of the North Coast

Nonprofit Hospice of the North Coast was established in 1980 to fill the need for comprehensive, compassionate hospice care in North County San Diego. Since its inception, it has grown in services, staff and clients. It currently provides a full spectrum of programs to terminally ill clients and their families, including anticipatory and post-death bereavement support, as well as a Pathways Program for those with a declining chronic disease. To fulfill its goal of maintaining dignity, comfort and highest quality of life for those it serves, regardless of ability to pay, HNC hosts fundraising events, operates a resale shop and maintains a cadre of volunteers. HNC’s Pacifica House in-patient residence in Carlsbad, which opened in 2013, is the first such freestanding facility in North County.

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