Glenna Hayhoe, one of the founders of nonprofit Avow Hospice 40 years ago, was recognized by The Women’s Foundation of Collier County as a Women of Initiative at its Women Rock Philanthropy luncheon Dec. 6.
“Glenna not only started Collier County’s only nonprofit hospice 40 years ago with a dream and no funding, but she also continues at age 91 to volunteer regularly,” said Jaysen Roa, president and CEO of Avow. “She epitomizes the heart of hospice, and as Avow begins celebrations for its 40th anniversary, Glenna continues to motivate even our youngest volunteers to be caring and have a hospice heart while also inspiring our staff, who are fortunate to work with her.”
Hayhoe and her late husband Bruce founded Avow’s hospice program and brought the essential service to Collier County in 1983, introducing a completely new and misunderstood field of care at the time required dedication. Hayhoe’s passion for caring for those at the end of life, treating each person with dignity and respect, and not allowing anyone to die alone drove her to find volunteers and funding to get the first hospice in Naples up and running.
“Forty years ago, the hospice concept caught my interest. Caregiving has always been part of my background,” Hayhoe said, explaining that she was a volunteer at the hospital when she saw a need. “Many other organizations I was a part of had needs, but the hospice program was the one that became my obsession. Many patients had no local connections and were deprived of that family spirit. After spending hours listening to their families, I knew I would dedicate my time to caregiving.”
The Women’s Foundation of Collier County’s Women Rock Philanthropy annual luncheon honors dynamic women who have helped change the community through their passion, leadership, innovation, and time and talent dedication. Proceeds from the luncheon honoring the women help meet the needs of local at-risk women and girls through grants from the Women’s Foundation.
Avow was founded in 1983 as Collier County’s original, non-profit hospice. Today, Avow’s non-profit companies provide palliative care consultations for adults facing chronic or serious illness and hospice care and bereavement support services for children and adults. To learn more about the scope of services provided by Avow, call 239-261-4404 or visit www.avowcares.org.