Yesterday, seven members of the Save on Foods leadership team, comprised of local store and regional managers, arrived at Jeneece Place with bags and bags of groceries to stock our pantry. Jeneece herself welcomed the team and the kitchen came alive with laughter and conversation as we all gathered around to look in the bags and chat with the Save on Foods managers, who were proud to be able to help nourish island families.
Look who dropped in! Ken Taylor and Max, his father-in-law, visited Jeneece Place yesterday to present Children's Health Foundation of Vancouver Island's Chief Executive Officer, Veronica Carroll MBA CFRE with a generous donation of $7500 raised via McHappy Day this past spring.
Saturday evening Jeneece Place had a HUGE delivery of flowers - all of the bouquets given to the Royal Family and Prime Minister Trudeau and Mrs. Grégoire-Trudeau by well-wishers!
In addition to public rooms of the house being adorned with floral decorations, all ten resident Jeneece Place families received a bouquet to brighten their room or to take to the hospital to put beside their baby or child.
You asked and we delivered! Children's Health Foundation of Vancouver Island has finally created an official Facebook Page for Jeneece Place. Over the past few years we have been asked by families and community members where they could learn more about Jeneece Place, share their experiences, or reconnect with other Jeneece Place families. We are excited to provide a place online to bring together the Jeneece Place community.
Angie Edroff, Jeneece Edroff's Mother, has been kind enough to write a letter welcoming everyone to the new page:
Telus celebrates their tenth annual Days of Giving from May 16th to June 14th this year. As part of this campaign Telus had a team visit Jeneece Place this past weekend to volunteer their time. We are grateful to have been chosen as one of the many beneficiaries of the Telus Days of Giving.
It was wonderful to see volunteers zipping around the kitchen preparing soup, stew, muffins, and more.
For those who do not know, Jeneece Place is owned and operated by Children's Health Foundation of Vancouver Island (formerly the Queen Alexandra Foundation for Children). The house is located on the grounds of the Victoria General Hospital and is a 10,500 square foot home containing ten bedrooms, a large communal kitchen, dining room, games, media, activity and laundry rooms as well as outdoor play and recreation areas.
If you were tuned in to The Ocean 98.5 radio station last week, you may have listened to their Mother’s Day Competition. The contest involved writing a letter about a mother that deserved to win a gift basket, which included a candy tree, dinner for four at the Steamship Grill, and a $100 Sante Spa Gift Card. A woman named Anne Marie wrote a beautiful letter about her mother that touched the judges’ hearts. They chose to give the gift basket to her mom, Val, who in turn decided to donate the gift basket to Jeneece Place families!
Yesterday, May 4th, was the 22nd annual McHappy Day in McDonald’s Canada’s. This event raises funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities and other local children’s charities across Canada. Since 2012, a number of local McDonald’s locations have chosen Jeneece Place as their local charity of choice to receive half of the funds raised.
"Why volunteer at Jeneece Place? For me a great deal of pleasure is to be had from helping to keep the grounds attractive. For families going through a stressful time at the hospital, the landscaped yard provides a sanctuary, and for the volunteer, there's the chance for a bit of fresh air and exercise. Hours are flexible, and tools are provided, if needed. Come and find out how satisfying it is to contribute to the cheerful setting of this 'home away from home'."
December has seen a flurry of activities and generosity at Jeneece Place. The colourful Christmas lights outside are up; the twelve-foot tree is decorated; and we've had a range of visitors to help celebrate the season.
For the last three weeks, David Tayler from Campbell River has been busy in the Jeneece Place kitchen making loaves of bread by hand.
At first glance, he resembles one of our many wonderful volunteer — he quietly kneads the dough, creating something nutritious and delicious, while chatting pleasantly with families.
But David isn't a volunteer—David is a staying at the house. His partner, Tara, is expecting twins—a boy and a girl—and she needs to stay near the hospital to make sure the twins stay in her belly as long as possible.
On October 16, Jane Thomas left her 22-month-old son with her mother before heading to the Campbell River Hospital. She’d started to feel some pain in her abdomen, and, only 31 weeks pregnant, she wanted to make sure everything was okay with the baby.
Tuesday, November 17 was World Prematurity Day, and in Victoria, there is a group of mothers who turned that into a celebration.
All the mothers in this group have experienced having a premature baby in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Some of the women stayed at Jeneece Place with their families while their babies were in the hospital; others used the house for day-use—using the parking lot, grabbing a cup of tea in between feedings, sitting quietly by the fire to rejuvenate and re-energize for the long hours at the hospital.
For the third consecutive year, the Ground Guys volunteered at Jeneece Place as part of their national We Care Day. Not only did they volunteer their time, they solicited donations of mulch, chips, and plants.
After three years of work on the grounds, you can really see the difference their contributions make—rich, healthy soil = strong plants and trees... and the gardens are filling out beautifully.
After three months and three days in the NICU, Baby Jasper (a.k.a. Ziggy) is going home! His parents, Daniel and Mary Ann, and big sister Julianna, have been daily visitors at Jeneece Place since Ziggy was born at 28 weeks gestation, weighing only 1 lb, 14 oz.
Three years ago, Jeneece Edroff's dream came true: Jeneece Place opened, providing a home right next to the hospital where families can stay while their children are receiving treatment and care in Victoria.
In three years, Jeneece Place has hosted over 733 families who travel to Victoria from all over the island — and in some cases, beyond. Around 172 of the families have stayed at the home away from home more than once. Guests have included the families of children requiring operations, services, and rehabilitation; accident victims; premature babies—and more.
As many of you know, Jeneece Place is run thanks to the generous support of our community. One part of that support comes from our amazing volunteers.
Meet Anne, one of the most dedicated volunteers you will ever meet. She is the oldest volunteer associated with Children's Health Foundation, and is very proud of that fact. Anne comes every Tuesday to bake for the families staying at Jeneece Place. And what a treat her baking is! Her cookies are absolutely amazing, and the whole house smells delicious when she is here.
We had an exciting afternoon here last week- Jeneece brought her good friend Calum Worthy by! Calum, who grew up in Victoria, is best known for his role as Dez on the Disney Channel show Austin & Ally and The Coppertop Flop Show. The kids here were so excited to hang out with him and get some photos together. Calum brought photos to autograph for all of the kids, and had some great laughs with them. Thaks for stopping by Calum! (Ok, you too Jeneece!)