Thousand Oaks, California
Compassionate Care for Seniors:
Volunteer Hospice/Palliative Care: As a non-medical hospice we are uniquely positioned to offer our care and support outside the constraints put on medical hospices by Medicare and private insurances. This means we are able to assist patients before a six-month prognosis is made and those who still may be undergoing corrective treatment. Our volunteers are there to hold a hand, to listen, to comfort, they may prepare a meal, brush their patient's hair, and help with other general grooming needs. They may run errands and lend the much needed emotional support, care, and guidance to their patients long before the patient qualifies for medical hospice. Of equal importance is the direct support, respite, and guidance given to the care-giving family members, who often struggle with what is often a first time and overwhelming experience.
Grief Support: Grief Support is more than just helping someone get over the sadness of losing a loved-one; Profound grief can weaken the immune system causing a variety of health related issues including digestive problems, headaches, sore muscles, fatigue, and chest pains. There is a fine line between grief and clinical depression and many people need professional help to get through the grieving process. Our seniors receive long-term, professional support that allows them to heal from the adverse emotional and physical affects that are presented by grief and move positively forward with their lives.
Our focus is serving those in need and all are truly welcomed, however, it is important to note that 88% of our clients are in the low to extremely low income levels, many of whom are seniors living on limited retirement income or Social Security, as well as under-insured or uninsured families. Many times these individuals and families 'fall through the cracks' and do not qualify for subsidized outside assistance. Without the services provided by Hospice of the Conejo these people would not have access to the compassionate support, guidance, and healing care our professional therapists, specially trained volunteers and staff provide. We are the only organization in our region to offer non-medical volunteer hospice/palliative care and long-term therapist-led grief support completely free of charge.
One of our client came to us as a non-verbal Alzheimer's patient. She basically sat in her home day after day, not speaking a word or interacting with anyone. Our loving volunteer visits her twice a week for a couple of hours and reports such activities as "baked Christmas cookies together", "made Valentines decorations", "looked at and read magazines together", "sang songs with another volunteer who accompanied us on piano". This woman now has joy and some normalcy in her life thanks to our volunteer's loving care and support.
Since 1977 Hospice of the Conejo has been dedicated to serving as a community based, non-profit, non-medical, volunteer hospice and grief support center, whose objective is to affirm life, even when faced with life-limiting illness and grief, by providing compassionate support, care, guidance and education to individuals and families facing critical illnesses and end-of-life issues.
All of our services are always offered completely free of charge.