As anyone who has ever had a terminally ill loved one knows, the services of hospice are invaluable. Now you can help this organization while doing something you love by taking part in one of the many hospice regattas. Since its founding in 1982, the National Hospice Regatta Alliance (NHRA) and its member regattas have directed more than $15 million to hospice programs around the country, with all money raised through sailing regattas organized locally around the country. The money raised through sailing regattas has helped non-profit hospices relieve the suffering of tens of thousands of dying patients while providing compassionate support to their loved ones. The 25 regattas in the United States, Canada and the U.S. Virgin Islands in 2011 are slated to raise more than $1 million.
Although funds raised by NHRA member regattas are used in various ways, they frequently underwrite bereavement support programs, including children’s camps, where youngsters affected by loss can heal and just play with other kids. These services — offered free or at minimal cost — would not exist without the support of the NHRA’s member regattas.
Many of the sailors involved in NHRA don’t just participate in the regattas but are also involved in the local hospices that the events support. And family members who have benefitted from hospice are part of the regattas too. Many of the local regattas stage a “Memorial Sail.” A sail is laid out during the regatta for participants and spectators to sign and inscribe with the names of loved ones. At the end of the event, the sail is affixed to a boat and sent off into the sunset to symbolize passings and memories. See the schedule below for the remaining hospice regattas on the 2011 schedule.
2011 National Hospice Regatta Schedule
August 5 & 6, 2011 — Jefferson County/Lake Ontario, N.Y.
August 6, 2011 — Elizabeth City/Albermarle Sound, N.C.
August 19 & 20, 2011 — Holland, Mich.
August 19 & 20, 2011 — Rochester/Lake Ontario, N.Y.
August 27, 2011 — San Diego, Calif.
September 10, 2011 — Summersville Lake, W.Va.
September 11, 2011 — Santa Barbara, Calif.
September 24, 2011 — Annapolis, Md.
October 7-9, 2011 — Lancaster/Rappahannock River, Va.
October 14-16, 2011 — Anderson/Hartwell Lake, S.C.
For more information, go to www.hospiceregattas.org.