Craig Montgomery has volunteered at Ohio’s Hospice for more than 10 years, maintaining the garden and solarium at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and visiting with patients and families in the Hospice House.
“The garden is an extension of the solarium, which I have been involved with since it opened the same year I started volunteering,” Craig said. “The garden is meant to be a place of comfort and reflection, and many family members and staff enjoy the quiet and solitude. It is also a very hands-on place for some.”
In recent years, Craig and Amy Mellon, landscaper at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, have worked together to plant a variety of vegetables in the garden including tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, lettuce, and a variety of peppers. The garden also provides a variety of herbs for use by the café at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and for aromatherapy with patients.
Local Boy Scouts built raised beds for Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton that make cultivating and daily tending to the gardens easier.
Craig spends time tending the garden each of the two days he volunteers. When he is not there, Amy and other staff members look after the garden.
Ashley Faun, volunteer coordinator at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, said the not-for-profit organization is grateful for volunteers like Craig who support the mission through their unique talents and gifts.
“The garden provides another area for families to take a break from being a caregiver. Stepping outside and getting fresh air and veggies can really fill up someone’s heart,” she said. “Our building is designed for patients and families to feel comfortable. The garden has a way of easing the spirit.”
The garden is open to patients, families and staff for peaceful reflection and to enjoy fresh herbs, vegetables and flowers.
Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, an affiliate of Ohio’s Hospice, is a not-for-profit hospice provider. Since 1978, it has served patients and families in the Dayton region in their homes, extended care and assisted living facilities, and the Hospice House location in Dayton. A variety of grief support services are available to the entire community through the Pathways of HopeSM Grief Counseling Center. Support and education are provided by a team of counselors and social workers, all with significant experience and expertise in assisting grieving children, adolescents and adults. Pathways of Hope was established in 2002. Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton serves more than 1,000 patients and families daily, achieving national recognition for innovative services and outstanding care.