Whether measured in years, months, or even days, the Canuck Place Children’s Hospice team believes that every life is precious and should be lived to the fullest. This holiday season, they’re honouring the many special lives at Canuck Place, like Elan from Kelowna.
In 2002, at only 18-months-old, Elan experienced a demyelinating episode after a viral infection, which caused her to lose all her motor control. Many health challenges followed, including recurrent acute pancreatitis, feeding intolerance, severe scoliosis and hip dislocations.
Elan’s condition was complex and she was growing up with constant, severe pain.
Offering a life that wasn’t defined by pain
In 2012, after years of trying to manage Elan’s condition, her family was introduced to Canuck Place Children’s Hospice in hopes of finding comfort and care.
When the family arrived at Canuck Place, Elan was in near constant pain, and vomited 15 to 20 times a day. She was unable to sleep and would cry for hours trying to cope with her condition. Her family felt helpless, desperate to restore some quality of life to Elan’s daily routine. After meeting with Canuck Place Medical Director Dr. Hal Siden and the Canuck Place clinical team, their lives changed.
Mother Cheryl recalls the impact the family witnessed early on, “Dr. Siden recommended some treatments that Elan had never had before,” Cheryl said. “Within months of our first Canuck Place stay, Elan stopped vomiting! Being able to see her smile, laugh, play with her sisters, and sleep after years of suffering, is something I don’t know how to describe in words.”
The Canuck Place clinical team was there with innovative pain and symptom management and medical respite care that allowed Elan to experience a life that wasn’t defined by pain.
Since then, the entire family, including sisters Emily and Erin, has stayed at Canuck Place where they’ve made many cherished memories together.
“To have the Canuck Place team make Elan laugh, and figure out the things she likes to do, means a lot to us,” says Cheryl. “It shows they care enough to get to know her and be a part of her life.”
Your gift will help children from the Okanagan and across BC
Every life is precious and deserves to be lived as fully as possible. Canuck Place works hand-in-hand with families like Elan’s to provide expert clinical care and help build special memories, all at no cost.
This holiday season, your gift will provide care for children like Elan in the Okanagan and across BC.
For a limited time your donation will be matched by John & Claire Nicola and Friends, so give today and help Canuck Place be there when families need them the most.
To learn more, and to donate today, visit canuckplace.org.