McLean Hospice Volunteers Deliver Holiday Cheer to Patients and their Families


McLean Hospice volunteers display the whimsical bags they created for 25 patients and their families.This year’s theme “Brown Paper Packages Tied up String,” perfectly suits the goodies inside, including home-made fudge, chicken soup mix, hand-knit prayer shawls and holiday amaryllis. Pictured left to right: Jane Erie, Mary Porter-Wright, Louise Polistena-D’Agosto, Catherine Jahne, Taffy Wilcox, Kathie Fallon, Gail Kostruba, Meghan Lucker. To learn more about the McLean Hospice program or volunteer opportunities, call 860-658-3954 or visit us at www.McLean 


 A group of dedicated hospice volunteers gathered together at McLean Saturday morning, eager to bring some holiday comfort and joy to 25 hospice patients and their families.

They cheerfully filled “Brown Paper Packages Tied Up with String” with some favorite holiday things, including chicken soup mix, chocolate fudge home-made by volunteers, and exquisitely-knit prayer shawls donated by local church groups. Each bag also contained a holiday amaryllis, donated by Marilyn and Greg Douglas in memory of a beloved friend and patient.

The group was extremely appreciative of the donations that made these bags so special. The handmade items truly “came from the heart” of the many who spent their time to make this possible.

Chairperson Taffy Wilcox of Avon commented, “I resist all of the commercialism and hubbub this time of year. This is the most meaningful thing I do. To me, this is what Christmas and the holidays are all about.”

Taffy and volunteer, Meghan Lucker further explained the value of McLean’s Hospice Program. “We are so committed to the concept of hospice and wish more people were aware that Hospice care is available to patients for up to six months. Hospice intervention makes the quality of life so much nicer for patients and their families.”

Later that morning, a second group of volunteers arrived to pick up the bags and hand-deliver these gifts to patients, along with a friendly smile.

Volunteer Coordinator Mary Porter-Wright noted that each year this holiday project brings a bit of joy to both families and patients at what can be a difficult time. “The families are always touched and surprised when we deliver them. I delivered a basket and spent over two hours with a woman and her daughter. It was a lovely way to spend my afternoon.”

McLean Hospice is dedicated to improving the comfort of patients and supporting their families through the end-of-life journey.

The McLean Hospice Program features highly experienced hospice-certified nurses, master’s- prepared social workers and spiritual counselors, Hospice trained aides, and a certified Hospice Medical Director, in addition to dedicated volunteers.

Mclean Hospice serves patients and families in Avon, Bloomfield, Burlington, Canton, East Hartland, Farmington, Granby, Simsbury, West Harford, and Windsor.

To learn more about McLean Hospice admissions or volunteer opportunities, call: 860-658-3954 or visit us at www.McLean