Chocolate Extravaganza to benefit Dream Team

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Dream Team of Hospice Compassus needs help to make the wishes of local terminal patients in their care come true.

"The Dream Team is similar to the Make a Wish Foundation," explained Ginger Harrison, Hospice Compassus, volunteer coordinator. "We've made wishes come true for many patients. We've provided trips, vacations, weddings, reunited families and other requests.

"We recently helped a man from Kirbyville receive his doctorate," she continued. "Bob Robbins had all his work complete for it, but hadn't had the money to finish, so he got his doctorate just a few weeks before he died."

Robbins had battled COPD for years and had to lower his level of physical activity. He and his wife started taking college courses together, and he spent his last years taking classes to receive his associate, bachelor and then his doctorate degrees. Because of the financial cost in receiving his doctorate, Robbins had not been able to complete it.

That is where the Dream Team stepped in and helped him reach his goal.

Requests are sometimes very unique and individualized.

Barbara Henry, of Branson, found out that she was dying of cancer.

"I had to give up driving," Henry said. "Being on opiates and driving was not safe for me or for others. Then I found myself stuck in the house more and more."

She searched for an alternative mode of transportation and decided that a three-wheeled bicycle might be a good idea for her.

"I sent the bike information to Diane Hasler, social worker and now my great friend," Henry said. "She thought it just might be the answer, too. I was so excited I couldn't let myself believe it would really happen, but sure enough it did."

Henry shared that she was able to build up her endurance and ride the bike further each day and was eventually able to ride her bike far enough and visit her best friend who was also sick and dying of cancer.

"The Dream Team certainly fulfilled my dream." she said. "In fact, they gave me new memories, and a feeling of freedom."

Hospice Compassus will be holding it's fourth annual Sweet Dreams Chocolate Extravaganza on Saturday, Nov. 9, at the Hilton Convention Center in Branson. Ginger Harrison is gearing up for the event by searching for businesses and individuals to rent booth space.

"We are looking for exhibitors of wine, cheese, chocolate and coffee," Harrison said. "Wine, cheese and coffee are new this year." Event coordinators have lowered booth fees to $100 to encourage more exhibitors to sign up.

Harrison encourages those interested to call her for information.

"This is a fundraiser for our local area, which includes Barry, Lawrence, Stone and Taney counties," she said. "All the money we make stays here."

Harrison is also accepting items and packages for a drawing that is held at the chocolate event.

"We will have Branson show packages, and Eureka Springs vacation packages that have been contributed," she said, "and I am still accepting donations from all over the southwest Missouri area for the drawing."

For more information, call Harrison at 417-335-2004, or email her at ginger.harrison@hospicecom.com.

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