Caregivers thanked this week at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Comox

Physicians, staff and volunteers at St. Joseph's General Hospital are being thanked for their care and compassion.

THE ANDERSON JAZZ SYNDICATE — from left

Physicians, staff and volunteers at St. Joseph’s General Hospital are being thanked for their care and compassion.

It’s Pastoral Care Week at the hospital, and five days of music and treats have been planned in the Sisters Café to show appreciation to St. Joseph’s dedicated care team.

Twenty-five local musicians including Dick Stuart, Tracy Canil, the Divertimento Baroque Ensemble, Sue Medley, the Views Chime Bell Choir, Tom Walton and Anela Kahiamoe have donated 20 hours of music.

Sponsors such as the St. Joseph’s Auxiliary Gift Shop, Best Western Plus The Westerly Hotel and Convention Centre, Comox Valley Funeral Home, Fifth Street Florist, the St. Joseph’s General Hospital Foundation, Island Farms, Quality Foods, Shamrock Farm and Tim Hortons have made it possible to provide free treats each day.

Helen Austin is one of the many performers during the week.

“It’s nice getting out in the community,” she said. “I’m such a hermit as a musician. It’s nice seeing such a cross-section of people here, people working, people who are sick. It makes you think about life and be grateful.”

Austin noticed a lot of people bobbing along to her music as she played.

“I guess it’s nice to have live music while you’re eating,” she said. “They seemed very appreciative, which is nice.”

The week was meant to show appreciation to St. Joseph’s staff, physicians and volunteers.

“The pastoral care chaplains are here as a support for patients and families and also for staff, and this is a week in which we show appreciation from the community to staff for the great work they do day in and day out,” said Steve Hill, the hospital’s director of pastoral care, mission and medical ethics. “That’s part of our role, supporting our staff. It’s an absolute thrill having absolutely superb musicians volunteer their time. It’s a fun, happy week of appreciation, and appreciation is good medicine.

“I think the idea that the artists in the community are stepping up to the plate and expressing appreciation to staff and that community businesses are stepping up to the plate and expressing appreciation is incredible.”

Pastoral Care Week will wrap up with a family day on Friday.

There will be live music and pumpkin tarts with cream from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and staff are encouraged to bring their children and dress up in Halloween costumes.

“We’re just trying to make it fun for staff and their children,” said Hill. “Children like coming to see their parents’ workplaces. That’s a great idea that came from staff.”

St. Joseph’s president and CEO Jane Murphy believes the week’s events have a very positive impact on staff.

“Pastoral care is a big part of what we do here at St. Joseph’s, really supporting patients and residents and families with their spiritual and religious needs,” she said. “It certainly highlights that part of our culture, and it’s just a great event to bring people together. It’s a positive event for St. Joseph’s. It sends a strong signal of community. We have wonderful musicians coming in and donating their time, and that’s a very positive message to the hospital and staff and physicians, just having that moral support from the community.”

Murphy has only been at St. Joseph’s since September, but she has been impressed by the sense of community in and around the hospital.

“I think St. Joseph’s is a community hospital, and certainly in my short time here, I absolutely have a sense that the community not only supports the hospital but actively engages the hospital in many ways,” she said. “That feels so good to be part of the community and for the community to be a big part of what we do. I’m absolutely thrilled to be here in the Comox Valley and at St. Joseph’s. I’ve been very impressed with the individuals and groups I’ve met in the community but also with our physicians and staff and volunteers in the hospital — they’re just incredible people who want to do their very best for the patients and residents we serve, and that’s just a really great feeling.”

writer@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Residents want City of Courtenay to move proposed trail route

City says route closer to the shoreline poses number of problems

Comox Valley RCMP looking for missing woman

Ami Guthrie was last seen in Courtenay in early July

Conservation officers relocate Spirit bear known to roam northwestern B.C.

Bear roamed valley north of Terrace for many years

Comox Valley Regional District awarded poverty reduction strategy grant

The Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD), in partnership with the City of… Continue reading

CVRD office and meetings re-opening to public

The office has been closed to the public since March 17 to help limit the spread of the coronavirus

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Vancouver Island business ad unintentionally features OK gesture linked to white supremacy

Innocuous ‘OK’ gesture in cleaning franchise advertisement gets flak on social media for ‘supposedly’ promoting white supremacy

Minivan driver’s speed a factor in fatal 2018 Malahat crash

Driver was travelling at 110 km/h in a construction zone

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Lower Mainland YouTubers claim to be Kelowna display toilet ‘poopers’

RCMP can not speak to legitimacy of video, will be investigating

Most Read