Thursday, March 22, 2018

Kelly Greens raises $43,000 for Hope Hospice

Members of the Kelly Greens Golf & Country Club hosted the 17th annual Golf Classic to benefit Hope Hospice. More than 80 golfers and 150 event supporters enjoyed a golf tournament, scavenger hunt and banquet during the event, which raised $43,000 from a 50-50 raffle and silent and live auctions.

Since the inception of the Kelly Greens tournament, members of the country club have raised nearly $500,000 for Hope Hospice.

John and Judy Dolan served as Golf and Tennis Classic event committee chairs. Event sponsors included Bank of America/Merrill Lynch; Club Care/Pine Straw Inc.; Cintron Landscape Services; Tim Smith Brick Pavers; Build, Inc.; and Charles and Jane Johnson.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Groundbreaking at The Preserve

Hope President and CEO Samira K. Beckwith with Kevin Ahmadi of Volunteers of America

Volunteers of America, the non-profit parent organization of Cape Coral’s Gulf Coast Village, has broken ground on The Preserve, a new state-of-the-art skilled nursing and assisted living residence in Fort Myers. The three-story, 118,000-square-foot facility is currently under construction at the northeast corner of Six Mile Cypress Parkway and Michael G. Rippe Parkway in south Fort Myers.

“With more than 30 senior living and care communities throughout the U.S., Volunteers of America is a well-known leader in senior living, and we’re excited to bring that same level of medical care and compassion into Fort Myers,” said Kevin Ahmadi, regional director of operations for Volunteers of America, the non-profit organization that sponsors The Preserve. “Over the years, we have been working in partnership with local care providers including Lee Health and Hope Healthcare on strategies to meet the growing needs of Lee County’s seniors.”

The Preserve is the first building to break ground at Hope Preserve, a healthcare campus planned to include multiple facilities and organizations dedicated to caring for seniors and for people who are chronically ill.

“While envisioning the ideal Hope Preserve campus, we knew it was important to include partnerships that would complement our mission of improving the quality of life for people who are frail, aging or coping with serious illnesses,” said Samira K. Beckwith, president and CEO of Hope Healthcare. “The Preserve’s groundbreaking marks the first step in addressing our region’s growing need for the comforting care. Hope has provided to the community for nearly 40 years. We are delighted to share in this exciting milestone, and we are eagerly looking forward to celebrating additional site developments in the future.”

Thursday, February 8, 2018

VALOR program recognized by Cape Royal Community Foundation

Hope VALOR, a program of Hope Healthcare, was awarded a $3,000 grant from the Cape Royal Community Foundation.

Hope’s volunteer Honor Guard, a group of U.S. veterans and supporters, conduct special presentations for Hope’s veterans as part of the VALOR program. With family and friends in attendance, veterans are honored with a certificate of appreciation, lapel pin, stuffed bear and a formal military salute.

Staff also collaborate with the Veterans Administration to help make arrangements for replacement medals, military funeral honors, burials in a VA national cemetery, and donations of artifacts to historical societies and museums.

VALOR was among seven nonprofit organizations recognized with 2017 grants from the CRCF.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Annual Hope Parkinson Symposium: Education and Inspiration

Health care professionals, therapists, volunteers, caregivers and those living with Parkinson’s disease are invited to a morning of education and inspiration at the annual Hope Parkinson Symposium Friday, Feb. 16 at Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre at Royal Palm Square in Fort Myers.

The day kicks off with an optional pre-event session with movement disorder specialist Dr. Ramon Rodriguez, who will discuss Duopa, a gel formation of carbidopa/levodopa from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. The Symposium will feature keynote speaker Dr. Chauncey Spears, neurologist and senior movement disorders fellow at the University of Florida Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration, presenting “The Mind, Mood and Memory in Parkinson’s Disease.” John Baumann, an internationally renowned motivational speaker who has PD, will offer tips for living your best life in “Care Partnering through Love and with Hope” together with his wife, Bernadette. Registered nurse, certified personal trainer and functional aging specialist Jeri Ann Lundgren will present “How Fitness Can Improve Functional Abilities and Prevent Falls.” 

The day will conclude with a guest speaker Q&A panel. Symposium pre-event check-in begins at 8:15 a.m.; registration and exhibits begin at 9:30 a.m. Seating is limited and pre-registration is required. $25 per person includes a deluxe brunch buffet.

The Symposium’s lead sponsor is Abbvie; sponsors include Acadia Pharmaceuticals, Medtronic, Seniors BlueBook; UD WorldMeds; Brookdale Senior Living Solutions; FYZICAL Therapy & Balance Centers; LeeHealth; and Osterhout McKinney, P.A. Elder Law Attorneys.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Yachts of Hope Benefit for Hope Hospice Raises More Than $500,000

Yachts of Hope – a fundraiser for Hope Hospice at Gulf Harbor Yacht and Country Club – raised more than $500,000 and marked the start of Hope Hospice’s capital campaign to build a new hospice house and senior care facility at the corner of Six Mile Cypress and Metro Parkway in Fort Myers.

Hosted by Sandy Stilwell Youngquist, Sonya Sawyer and Lizbeth Benacquisto, with committee members Pam Cronin, Deanna Hansen, Andie Vogt and Mary Jo Walker, the event featured tours of 15 luxury yachts and tastings from fine local restaurants and caterers including Cru, LYNQ, Keyline Bistro, SABORAM and Purple Spoon.

Guests enjoyed a gourmet dinner, live band and dancing along with an exciting live auction with VIP trips to The Masters, EMMY Awards, Paris, London and Italy.

Known as Hope Preserve, the property will feature a state-of-the-art hospice house, community bereavement center, a Parkinson Program Center and Hope PACE Care Center for the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly.

“This care campus will focus on ensuring optimal quality of life for people who are frail and aging, living with serious illness or grieving,” said Hope Healthcare President and CEO Samira K. Beckwith. “Hope Preserve will allow for the expansion of vital programs and services such as bereavement support for children and adults, Parkinson’s resources and senior care.”

Yachts of Hope presenting sponsor The John E. and Aliese Price Foundation was joined by top sponsors Stilwell Enterprises, Youngquist Brothers, Cypress Cove, Home-Tech and Mark Loren Designs.

Yachts of Hope 2018

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Samira K. Beckwith Elected to NHPCO Board of Directors

Samira K. Beckwith, president and CEO of Hope Healthcare, has been elected to serve on the board of directors of National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. Beckwith also currently serves on the board of directors for the NHPCO Hospice Action Network.

Beckwith has previously served as a NHPCO board officer in the positions of Chair and Treasurer, as well as Chair of the board of directors for the National Hospice Foundation.

NHPCO is the largest membership organization representing hospice and palliative care programs and professionals in the U.S. The organization is committed to improving end-of-life care and expanding access to hospice care with the goal of profoundly enhancing the quality of life for people dying in America and their loved ones.

“Serving in a leadership position helps ensure that I can elevate hospice and palliative care for Southwest Floridians,” Beckwith said. “Being involved with organizations like NHPCO helps the development of partnerships and opportunities of the evolving model of health care that directly affects people. It’s all about helping to improve quality of life and access to care for those in need.”

In addition to positions with other national and statewide boards, Beckwith served as a state delegate to The White House Conference on Aging, was a Governor’s appointee to the Long-Term Care Policy Advisory Council, and is the founding president of the Florida PACE Association.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Wife of county-pop music legend Glen Campbell shares Alzheimer’s experience: A Caregiver’s Journey

Caregivers, medical professionals and community members are invited to attend “A Caregiver’s Journey” as Kim Campbell, wife of Grammy Hall of Fame and award-winning music artist Glen Campbell, shares her Alzheimer’s experience and discusses ways families can navigate the challenges of the disease.

Sponsored by Arden Courts Memory Care Community and Hope Healthcare, the event is free and open to the public Wednesday, Jan. 17 at 3 p.m. at New Hope Presbyterian Church, 10051 Plantation Road in Fort Myers.

Registration is required. RSVP online at or call 877-856-2449.

Kim Campbell’s marriage of more than three decades to Glen Campbell has become a testament to devotion and overcoming adversity. Since his diagnosis in 2011, she supported her husband through the tumultuous hardships that accompany the disease to become a tireless, influential voice for all people living with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. She recently launched, a lifestyle guide providing resources, inspiration and a sense of community to this underserved group.

Arden Courts Executive Director Dotty St. Amand and Hope Healthcare President and CEO Samira K. Beckwith will provide a special introduction to the afternoon with Kim Campbell.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tree of Lights Tradition Continues at Hope Hospice

We welcome friends and family members to remember a loved one this year by adding a butterfly to our Tree of Lights. This annual tradition at Hope has a special history and has become a cherished ritual for many of our supporters.

The white butterflies on each Tree represent the loved ones who we remember all year long and who we especially want to honor and memorialize during the holiday season.

  • A gift of $25 ensures the placement of a personalized butterfly.
  • With a gift of $50 or more, donors will also receive a 2017 metal keepsake ornament for their own tree. 
  • Dedication stones for our Tribute Gardens are also available for $250 and come with all the benefits listed above.

Ornaments may be purchased at the front desk of each Hope Hospice House or at

Introducing Hope Choices: Complementary Care for Serious Illness

Hope Healthcare has introduced a new program designed for those who would benefit from hospice care, but are not ready to forgo treatment for their terminal condition.

Hope Choices, a Medicare Care Choices Model, offers select hospice support services at no cost while allowing people to continue receiving curative treatments from their existing physician for cancer, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or human immunodeficiency virus.

“Hope Choices combines the comforting care of hospice with curative care,” said Samira K. Beckwith, Hope Healthcare president and CEO. “We’re grateful to be part of this model program that allows us to expand our services by supporting patients and families living with the challenges of serious illness.”

Hope Choices offers a personalized, comprehensive assessment and plan of care and care coordination; nursing care; in-home respite care; aide and homemaker assistance; and counseling and family support, in addition to other services. The program provides symptom management and support through a combination of in-person visits and 24/7 telephone access.

To learn more about Hope Choices, call (239) 482-4673.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Hope Recognized as a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador

Hope Healthcare has been recognized as a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador as part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s initiative designed to help serve the public by strengthening our national resilience against extreme weather events.

“Hurricane Irma tested Hope’s preparedness plan, and I’m proud to say we passed with flying colors,” said Samira K. Beckwith, Hope Healthcare president and CEO. “Our dedicated staff and volunteers rose to the challenge and worked tirelessly to care for so many of our community’s most vulnerable who needed special help during an already difficult time.”

“Hope’s association with the Weather-Ready Nation program allows us to utilize our vital connection to the community and encourage people to heed warnings and take appropriate action during severe weather,” Beckwith added.

As a WRN Ambassador, Hope Healthcare is committed to working with NOAA and other ambassadors from government, non-profits, academia and private industry to help make the nation more ready, responsive and resilient against extreme environmental hazards.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

A Message from Our CEO for National Hospice Month

A Catholic priest I know used to ask the congregation, “How many of you want to go to heaven?” Once all the hands were in the air, he would pause for a moment before delivering the follow-up question: “Do you know you have to die to get there?”

Talking about life’s final chapter is still one of the most difficult topics that we all face. We are one of the only cultures that believe that death is optional and avoids talking about it. At Hope Hospice, we don’t want to talk about death either. We want to talk with people about living every day as fully as possible, without suffering or worrying about being a burden on the family. We want people think about what they can do, how to leave a legacy and what story people will share about them.

As part of National Hospice and Palliative Care Month in November, Hope Hospice is committed to providing community education about care so that people have the information they need to make the best choices for themselves and their families.

Hospice enhances a patients’ quality of life and eases the transition for their loved ones. But sadly, many people delay seeking help from hospice because of fear and misconceptions.

In a recent article published by the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, the authors of “Study Finds Hospice Patients are Admitted Too Late” reported that while older adults experience unhealthy symptoms and disabilities for months, half of these patients are admitted to hospice only in the last two weeks of their lives. Another study showed that people who were under hospice care actually lived longer than those who were not offered hospice care. They also reported living better.

Hospice does not mean giving up. It means preparing for the final chapter of life, living each day to the fullest, looking at what you can do and having control over your care.

Hospice is a comprehensive program of care and services that brings the patient and family expert medical, emotional and spiritual support along with coverage for medications, supplies and other items not usually covered in the health care system. People can receive care in private residences, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or in one of our four Hope Hospice Houses. Hope also offers grief and bereavement services to family members – including programs specifically for children.

Hope’s palliative care program is also available to ensure comfort and dignity while preventing needless suffering from pain, shortness of breath, nausea, depression and other symptoms before hospice care is needed. Palliative care is available for adults, teens, children and infants with serious illnesses who can benefit from comprehensive holistic services.

Eligibility for hospice benefits and palliative care often begins sooner than you would expect. Please remember to speak with your doctor about options as soon as a life-limiting diagnosis is made or call us directly. Hope’s comforting care is a call away for people of all ages, backgrounds, traditions, religions, diseases -- at the time when it is needed most.

Samira K. Beckwith is President and CEO of Hope Healthcare, a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3)-status community-based agency offering programs and services in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Hendry and Glades counties.