(continued)
VON offers FREE
'Caregivers day(s)'

by Sandy Lindsay

March 1, 2017
www.saugeentimes.com
www.kincardinetimes.com

Feature

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The Victorian Order of Nurses (VON) is Canada's largest, national, not-for-profit, health charitable home and community care organization and, for 120 years, since 1897, has helped people in their own homes.

The VON has a fascinating history of how a Canadian concept of helping people in remote areas became a vital link of health care throughout history during World War I, the Halifax Harbour munitions explosion of 1917, the flu epidemic of 1918, the Great Depression and World War II.

**In the late 1890s, Canada faced a dangerous shortage of nurses, doctors and hospitals, especially in remote areas. Lady Ishbel Aberdeen, wife of Canada’s Governor General, learned just how badly this affected people when she participated in the annual meeting of the National Council of Women held in Halifax in 1896. She later wrote about the “pathetic stories” she heard, “where young mothers and children had died, whilst husbands and fathers were traveling many weary miles for the medical and nursing aid which might have saved them.” [**an excerpt from VON History]

Today, with some 14,000 volunteers and staff in 52 sites, the VON offers more than 75 different home care, personal support and community services to enhance each client's quality of life providing personal assistance to make staying at home more comfortable and helps more than one million Canadians annually achieve that goal.

At each site, there is a local volunteer board and staff which ensures that each community's unique needs are met.

Each client also has an individual plan of care that is developed with personal values at the forefront and input from family members and caregivers.  VON believes "... in treating the whole person and that means taking into consideration how and where they live and the everyday struggles they face."

 The VON operates on the principle that everyone has the right to quality health care regardless of ability to pay.  As a charity, donations and any profit go into funding the service for people who would not otherwise be able to afford them.

On March 7th and again on the 29th, the VON is hosting a special 'Caregivers Day' in Kincardine and Owen Sound (see poster).  Both days are FREE events featuring keynote speakers, lunch and refreshments.

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