Hospice Dufferin receives provincial grant to strengthen volunteer base

April 20, 2023   ·   0 Comments

Last Friday (Apr. 14), Dufferin–Caledon MPP Sylvia Jones held an event at Hospice Dufferin to thank local volunteers. The event also recognized a $45,900 Resilient Communities Fund grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) to hire a part-time employee to create and build a volunteer human resources plan that will strengthen and rebuild the organization’s valuable volunteer base.

“Since 1988, Hospice Dufferin has been an important part of our community and I am pleased that they have received an Ontario Trillium grant,” said Sylvia Jones, MPP for Dufferin-Caledon. “This funding will support the organization as they continue to focus on rebuilding vitally important volunteer participation.”

The effects of Covid have created an increase in social isolation among Hospice Dufferin clients. In order to serve this community effectively, Hospice Dufferin recognized the need to create a new human resources volunteer plan. This new plan would recognize that there have been cultural changes in the community as people moved from the city to more urban centres in the last few years and would create opportunities for a broader volunteer pool of skills and diversity. Also, in order to increase their volunteer pool, Hospice Dufferin recognized the need to reach out in the community to promote these opportunities.

“The timing of this OTF grant is essential to Hospice Dufferin”, said Maureen Riedler, Executive Director of Hospice Dufferin. “A pandemic is a time when palliative and bereavement support has never been more imperative in the community. Volunteers are the backbone of community hospice programs, and we are grateful for this grant which has supported us in rebuilding our volunteer base.”

The new Resource Development Communications Coordinator will work alongside volunteers to build capacity and community in the organization.  “Our volunteers have decreased by 55% from the start of the pandemic due to the stresses of COVID, family obligations, moving and health concerns. Many of our volunteers were seniors that do not feel comfortable at this time returning to volunteering,” said Riedler. “Volunteer hours have decreased by 41% affecting our service to our palliative and bereavement clients and provide committee supports to the organization. Including the board, quality, and fundraising.”  

Hospice Dufferin services affect all facets of the community, especially the marginalized members of the community that do not often have a lot of resources to navigate the health and social services when they are going through the hardest part of their lives. We have clients that require more than just palliative services but also food bank, refugee, mental health, addictions and translation. Our role is to navigate them through this time.  Funds raised go directly back to creating programs and services to help empower people living with life-limiting illness, their caregivers and the bereaved to live fully in the face of challenges.  Visit to learn more.

The Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF), an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations celebrates 40 years of grantmaking in Ontario and making a lasting impact in communities. Last year, OTF invested nearly $209M into 2,042 community projects and partnerships, which included funding for the Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund. Visit to learn more.

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