Saugeen First Nation opens its doors to hospice care – Saugeen Times

November 28, 2023

Saugeen First Nation officially opened its hospice-like space, Niinigiiwe – “I’m Going Home” palliative care centre at the E’Gitzijit Endaawaad (Elders Facility) on Monday, November 27th (2023).

Spiritually it has been designed “For that Sacred Journey through the Western Door”.

Upon entering the hospice facility, built for Band and community members of Saugeen, visitors are immediately struck by the incredible Indigenous artwork on the walls. Created by artist Emily Kewageshig, the vibrant colours and symbolism depict First Nations’ ties to nature.

Chief Conrad Chief said it took a lot of coordination to bring the project to fruition. “As leaders it is up to us to look after our older generation. The elders and the children are always our priorities and our responsibilities.”

The new facility, that took more than a year to complete, is a self-sustaining unit with a full kitchen and dining area, living room and bedroom with an ensuite full bath. The bedroom also features double doors to allow for the patient in bed to be moved out of doors.

It was a also a day of celebration for the Mercer family who donated some 19 pieces of original art to adorn the walls. Sybil Mercer and son, Jim, were in attendance and donated the artworks on behalf of the family in honour of their late husband and father, Dr. Don Mercer.

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