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Colchester East Hants Health Centre launches Serenity Room

Cancer patients and their families receiving treatment at Colchester East Hants Health Centre now have a dedicated space for resources, information and comfort with the recent launch of the Serenity Room.

“We are so grateful and proud to be able to offer an inviting and supportive space for our patients and their families,” said Darlene Holmes, Colchester East Hants Health Authority’s cancer patient navigator.

The Serenity Room is a quiet, warm, sunny and inviting space that includes comfortable home-like seating, a computer with internet acceserenityss, telephone access for local calls and a direct line into the Canadian Cancer Society Information Line, a Bluetooth music system, educational materials, sample wigs, and other resources to help patients undergoing cancer treatment and their families. The room was decorated and furnished with support from interior decorator Iris Alymer, who donated her time to plan the décor.

Located in the Ambulatory Care area just outside the Chemotherapy Unit, the room was made possible through contributions to the Nova Scotia-based charity, Caring for Cancer Patients.

Donations included $10,000 in funding raised by university students Brianna Crowe and Katie Wilcox, as well as the owners of River Run Golf Club. Both students worked at the Truro area golf course in the summer of 2012 and came up with the idea to hold a fundraising golf tournament.

Through ongoing contributions and support for the space and programs, cancer patients can access financial assistance for travel and accessories like wigs. In time other complimentary therapies may also be offered.

Brenda Whittle, founder and director of Caring for Cancer Patients was on the organizing committee for the Sunshine Room, a similar service available at the Victoria General Hospital site of the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax. She has been instrumental in advocating for dedicated space for the Serenity Room when the health centre was being designed.

“Local patients saw the benefits of the service in Halifax and expressed their desire to see something here in Truro to help cancer patients and their families,” she said. “It is a great day for patients in Colchester East Hants.”

For more information about the Serenity Room, please contact Darlene Holmes at 902-893-5554, extension 42549 or by email at cehha.nshealth.ca

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