Orangeville Introduces Wind Phone to Support Grieving Community Members

The Hills of Headwaters Collaborative Ontario Health Team unveiled the first wind phone in Orangeville, providing a unique space for individuals to communicate with deceased loved ones. Plans are underway to install five more wind phones across Dufferin County and Caledon in the coming months.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Orangeville Introduces Wind Phone to Support Grieving Community Members

Orangeville Introduces Wind Phone to Support Grieving Community Members

On May 7, 2024, the Hills of Headwaters Collaborative Ontario Health Team's (HOHC OHT) bereavement group, in partnership with Headwaters Health Care Centre, unveiled the first wind phone in Orangeville at the hospital's Friendship Garden. Inspired by a Japanese concept, the wind phone provides a unique space for individuals to communicate with deceased loved ones and find solace while navigating their grief journey.

Why this matters: The introduction of wind phones in Orangeville and surrounding areas addresses a critical need for bereavement support, acknowledging the complex and often isolating experience of grief. By providing a safe space for individuals to process their emotions, this initiative has the potential to positively impact mental health outcomes and foster a sense of community and connection.

The wind phone aims to support bereaved and grieving individuals in the community by offering a means to work through their grief by speaking to their deceased loved ones. Orangeville Mayor Lisa Post emphasized the non-linear nature of grief, stating, "Navigating grief is not a linear experience. Every experience is unique."

Plans are underway to install five initial wind phones across Dufferin County and Caledon, with more locations to be added in the coming months. The initial locations include Shelburne Cemetery, Hereward Farms, Bethell Hospice, and Kay Cee Gardens. Heidi Vanderhorst, HOHC OHT engagement lead, expressed the significance of the wind phone, saying, "The wind phone will support those who have lost a loved one by providing an outlet for them to communicate with them and help them through their grief journey."

Vanderhorst also expressed gratitude to the current partners who have agreed to install the wind phone structures and emphasized the importance of creating more partnerships to increase the number of wind phones available for the community. She stated, "We are extremely grateful to all of our current partners who have agreed to install these structures and look forward to creating more partnerships to increase the number of wind phones available for our community." Vanderhorst added, "This is just the beginning... and implored people to know they are not alone on their grief journey."

Kim Delahunt, president and CEO of Headwaters Health Care Centre, highlighted the hospital's commitment to supporting patients and their caregivers, stating, "Headwaters Health Care Centre is committed to caring for patients in their end-of-life journeys and supporting their caregivers."

The introduction of the wind phone in Orangeville marks a significant step in providing support and solace to grieving individuals in the community. As more wind phones are installed across Dufferin County and Caledon, it is hoped that they will serve as a valuable resource for those navigating the complex and unique journey of grief.

Key Takeaways

  • The first wind phone in Orangeville was unveiled at Headwaters Health Care Centre's Friendship Garden.
  • The wind phone provides a unique space for individuals to communicate with deceased loved ones and process grief.
  • Five initial wind phones will be installed across Dufferin County and Caledon, with more to come.
  • The initiative aims to support bereaved individuals and foster a sense of community and connection.
  • The wind phone is a valuable resource for those navigating the complex and unique journey of grief.