New Endowment Honours the Life of Glenda Mitchell and Supports the Sunshine Coast Hospice Society

Glenda dressed in white, sits holding a book and smiling outside on a beautiful sunny day.

A new endowment at the Sunshine Coast Foundation has been established in memory of Glenda Mitchell. Glenda’s bright smile and charming sense of humour have been missed since her death from cancer this past November.

Throughout her illness, Glenda was able to secure support from the outstanding Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) palliative home care nurses, care aides, and her two amazing doctors. Their expertise and dedication enabled Glenda to remain at home under the care of her husband Don Basham and grandson Ian, with the support of their wonderful neighbourhood friends, for all but her final eight days.

Toward the end of Glenda’s life, Glenda and Don became more aware of the importance of hospice care when they tried to find such services for Glenda on the Sunshine Coast. The couple was frustrated to learn there are only two hospice beds to serve the local population, both located at Shorncliffe in Sechelt, and both with a long waitlist. “Glenda was devastated to learn that she may have to spend the last days of her life at a hospice in the Lower Mainland, far from the comfort of her home and isolated from family and friends,” Don said.

“Since 1987, the Sunshine Coast Hospice Society has been the only community, volunteer-based organization delivering palliative and hospice support on the Lower Sunshine Coast. It partners with VCH to provide residential hospice suites at Shorncliffe and is a strong voice advocating to ensure appropriate end-of-life and bereavement services meet the needs of Coast residents,” explained Tess Huntly, Executive Director of the Sunshine Coast Hospice Society (SCHS).

At SCHS, trained volunteers support palliative patients by providing everything from companionship and bedside vigil to facilitating Facetime calls for people to visit their families. Volunteers also provide a vital opportunity for family caregivers to get respite and protect themselves from burning out.

Sunshine Coast Hospice also supports families and loved ones grieving loss, and provides public education in our community about end of life care and options. Sustainable funding is critical for SCHS to maintain and grow its current suite of services.

To honour Glenda’s life and memory and perpetually support the critical work of SCHS, Don established the Glenda Mitchell Memorial Endowment with the Sunshine Coast Foundation. Donations to the fund will help SCHS provide compassionate and respectful end-of-life and bereavement care for all residents of the Sunshine Coast. Each year the Foundation will make a gift from the earnings on this endowment to the Sunshine Coast Hospice Society.

Anyone wishing to acknowledge Glenda’s memory and support the ongoing work of the Sunshine Coast Hospice Society may make a donation of any size to the Endowment. Online donations can be processed here, or you can donate by emailing, or calling 604.741.7360.

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