In 1983, a group of concerned individuals came together to address a need in their community. Together they established Hospice King and began to offer support to those at end of life. It was one of the first community-based hospices in Canada and the first in York Region. In 1999, our name was changed to Hospice King-Aurora to better reflect the area that we serve. Overtime the focus grew to providing support to those with life-threatening illness, the people who support them and those who are bereaved. With the addition of Richmond Hill to our service area at the end of 2015, we began operating under the name Hospice King-Aurora-Richmond Hill. In 2017 we changed the name to Hope House to better reflect the diversity programs we offer and the people we serve.
In our 35 year history we have been at the forefront of the hospice community with presentations at international conferences and helping to establish the Hospice Association of Ontario (now Hospice Palliative Care Ontario). We have mentored many other hospices along the way, with our documentary "Dying with Dignity" and practical manuals for volunteers. Most importantly, we have provided over 100,000 hours of services to people in King Township, south Aurora and Richmond Hill.
Hope House continues to provide services, at no cost, thanks to the generous support of our community.
HIGHLIGHTS OVER THE YEARS
Founded in 1983 by Jane Reid, Barbara Marshall Houlding, Sally Blaney and Joan Henderson, Hope House (formerly Hospice King-Aurora-Richmond Hill) was the first hospice in York Region, and one of the first in Ontario.
1983 Our first office opens in All Saints Anglican Church, and we record our very first referral
1984 A Hospice King manual is written for “hands on” care in the home (copyright 1984)
1987 Produce an award winning video “Dying with Dignity” about Hospice King services
1988 Recipient of a Canadian “Citation for Citizenship” award, present our first paper at the international Conference on Supportive Care at Chateau Montebello, QC
1991 Move into new office at 2184 King Road, King City
1992-93 Nominated for two community awards, including Volunteer of the Year Award
1993 The first Gourmet Strollathon takes place in King
1996 Hospice Richmond Hill and Hospice Vaughan open, mentored by HKA
1997 Receive the largest donation to date, $32k from The Military and Hospitaller Order of St. Lazarus
1999 Receive $25k grant from the Trillium Foundation to increase public awareness, our name changes to Hospice King-Aurora
2001 Receive $20k from the Order of St. Lazarus to review and support development of our bereavement program
2002 Hold our tenth Gourmet Strollathon, and the first in Aurora, hire our first bereavement specialist, to aid in expanding our programs and services
2003 Move to new premises at 155 King Road, Oak Ridges with 2,000 sq ft of administration & programming space, offer art therapy workshops to clients diagnosed with cancer
2004 Receive a $70k grant from the Trillium Foundation to furnish and equip our new office, begin offering energy & relaxation therapies such as Reiki & polarity therapy, Friends of Hospice host a very successful third Jitterbug Ball
2005 Focus on expanding partnerships with other service agencies to improve the community of care we offer to our clients
2006 Receive a $254k five-year grant from the Trillium Foundation to support staff salaries, and a $15k grant from the Harold Ballard Foundation for children and adolescent bereavement support
2007 Implement Hospice InfoAnywhere, a web-based care management system for client and volunteer management, in partnership with all six York Region visiting hospices, begin offering adolescent bereavement support groups, Achieve
Level I Accreditation from the Hospice Association of Ontario, the 19th of 102 hospices in the province to do so
2008 Achieve Level II Accreditation, Finalist in the Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards (VSRA) for the second consecutive year, recognizing excellence in financial reporting transparency and accountability
2009 Produce "Why is this Happening? What can I do?" an end-of-life resource for hospice families & clients, begin offering music therapy for children and adults, once again, Finalist in the VSRA
2010 Offer Picking Up the Pieces support group for cancer survivors & Beyond Surviving for individuals grieving a death by suicide, successful Jitterbug Ball raising over $80k, start offering yoga
2011 Win VSRA Award of Excellence
2012 Win VSRA for the second year; Move to 350 Industrial Pkwy South in Aurora, held a very successful Jitterbug Ball raising over $80k, chosen as charity for the Wolfpack's Epic BBQ
2013 Won VSRA for the third year and achieved Exemplar status, Celebrated 30 years of providing support to our community, once again benefitted from the Wolfpack's Epic BBQ
2014 Most successful JBB yet - record number of guests and over $180,000 raised to support programs over two years
2015 Service area expanded to include Richmond Hill, "Journeys" a support group for those living with Stage 4 and/or metastatic cancer, First year for "The Ladybug" - a Ladies Evening, benefitted from generous donation of Twistt Jewelry which was sold to raise funds for programs
2016 Most successful fundraiser in history - record number of guests and over $250k raised to support programs over the next two years; now operating as Hospice King-Aurora-Richmond Hill. Hospice Palliative Care Ontario Accreditation achieved.
2017 New name "Hope House Community Hospice"; Second location opens in Richmond Hill; Second Annual "LadyBug" evening
2018 Most successful fundraiser in History - Jitterbug Ball – record number of guests and over $350,000 raised; Successful group programming in all three cities served (Aurora, Richmond Hill and King Township; First Community Tennis Tournament in Memory of Cheryl Sutton; Celebrated 35th Anniversary!
2019 Third year of "LadyBug" evening; Accreditation achieved with Hospice Palliative Care Ontario;
2020 COVID-19 Pandemic - Care Model successfully changed to accommodate restrictions