Volunteer Spotlight- Helen Peace is one of our amazing volunteers!

Helen is on the far left in this group photo.

Helen Peace is one of our amazing volunteers! Helen is a long time member of our community, she’s an Elder in her church and has been a valued volunteer with Crater Community Hospice for more than 4 years. She helps us with new volunteer training programs, she visits with parents and their families, she facilitates grief support groups, offers caregiver support, helps with our annual Memorial services, and much, much more!

We are honored to have her as part of our team! Please join us in thanking Helen for her hard work and dedication to Crater Community Hospice and the families we serve.

New Board Officers: Local Community Leaders Active with Local Non-profit

We are excited to announce the appointment of new officers on our Board of Directors, as well as the full slate of Directors for 2017.

Crater Community Hospice’s new officers are Tracy L. Taliaferro, Esq. of Prince George, Chair; Dr. Jane Elliott of Colonial Heights, Vice Chair; Kathleen J. Wiltsie of Chester, Secretary; and M. Stephen Cates of Prince George, Treasurer.

As the region’s only locally based non-profit hospice, CCH is served by a volunteer Board of Directors who provide strategic and fiduciary guidance as well as multi-disciplinary expertise.  Directors live in and serve  communities throughout the CCH service area, which includes the cities of  Colonial Heights, Emporia, Hopewell, and Petersburg and the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Greensville, Prince George, Surry, and Sussex.

Karen Cameron, who recently joined CCH as its new CEO is thrilled. “We are so fortunate to have the leadership of these officers as we expand our programs and services within the Crater region. Their longstanding commitment to the community and their legal, healthcare and business acumen are gifts they bring to their roles. I am grateful to have such a strong team to provide insightful guidance to me and CCH.”

Chair Tracy L. Taliaferro, Managing Partner at Taliaferro & Mallory LLP in Colonial Heights, is well known in the local legal community. His legal practice includes civil litigation and criminal law defense as well as estate planning and administration, real estate issues, contracts, and business law. He is qualified by the Virginia Supreme Court as a Guardian ad litem for children and incapacitated adults, working primarily in the area of elder abuse. He has served as an instructor for J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College School of Business, Paralegal Program since 2013. His undergraduate degree is from Virginia State University and he completed his law studies at the University of Richmond.

Mr. Taliaferro has served CCH since 2001 in roles including the development and nominating committees, Vice Chair, and a previous term as Chair from 2003-2007. His efforts contributed to the successful move and 2008 completion of the building that now houses the CCH offices, Mitchell Community Room, and Thrift Shop. His extensive community service includes the Prince George Emergency Crew since 1977, including the positions of Executive Officer, Training Officer, Junior Crew, and Chaplain; Bikers Against Child Abuse since 2011; President of the Tinsley Charter Homeowner’s Association Board of Directors (2013-2015); and President of the Tinsley Charter Civic Organization Board of Directors (2008-2009) where he organized and implemented the community’s first National Night Out event in 2008.

Assisting him is  Vice Chair Jane Elliott, RN, PhD. Dr. Elliott is a registered nurse currently serving on the staff of the Commonwealth of Virginia Board of Nursing. Dr. Elliott has a BS in Nursing, a Masters in Education and a Doctorate in Urban Studies. She formerly served as Associate Director of Southside Regional Medical Center School of Nursing. From 1991-1993 she served as President of the Virginia League for Nursing.  She currently serves on the District 19 Community Services Board.

Secretary is Kathleen J. Wiltsie. Kathleen served 20 years in the US Army, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel.  Her assignments included Head Nurse of Ortho ward at Dwight D Eisenhower Medical Center, Fort Gordon, GA; Chief of Public Health on Army bases; staff officer at Public Health Command (then known as Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine) and at the Pentagon.  After retirement from the Army she helped to build a college Nursing Program and served as Clinical Coordinator and military liaison.  She has also worked with active duty personnel recovering from PTSD, helping them in their recovery.  She has published in “Perspectives” on the role of the Faith Community Nurse and PTSD.

CCH’s Treasurer is M. Stephen Cates, CPA. He retired after three decades in banking, including with Bank of Southside Virginia, serving as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. He most recently served as Director of Finance and Accounting for the John Randolph Foundation. Steve has an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Richmond and a Master of Science in accounting from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Other Directors with their primary professional associations are as follows:
JoAnn Glazier – Retired business owner and long term hospice volunteer
Jeanne E. Holmes – Business Development Officer, Physician Loans, SunTrust Bank
Janice Johnson – Assistant Director of Financial Aid, Richard Bland College
Terri P. Mason – Pastor of Woodlawn Baptist Church, Colonial Heights
Donald (Donnie) J. Milton – Real Estate Broker; Weichart Realtors – Brockwell & Portwood
Andrew G. “Drew” Spivey – President/Owner of Old Dominion Dialysis Services, Inc.
Melody Stone, CPA – Chief Executive Officer, Stone Financial Group, Inc. Chesterfield, VA

We are thankful for all our supporters

We appreciate everyone who supports us – thank you for helping us serve our community!

A few facts about our wonderful volunteers:


Honoring and Serving Veterans








At our November Coffee Chat, the topic was Honoring and Serving Veterans. Crater Community Hospice has been privileged to serve many local veterans and their families.

CEO Brenda Mitchell was joined by two of our volunteers who shared what it means to them to be a veteran volunteer and how they as well as the veterans and their families have gained so much from each other.

Lyn Whitmer told the attendees that “I am proud to be a veteran and excited and humbled about the opportunity to connect and support veterans in hospice care. I have only been volunteering a couple months but have already seen the positive benefits of honoring with the Pinning Ceremony and sitting with them individually and sharing their life stories.”

Both volunteers strongly recommend that other veterans get involved with Crater Community Hospice as they feel it adds so much to their life.

We are proud to be a participant in the national We Honor Veterans program. This collaboration between the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and local facilities works together to provide the best services to our veterans. We work to understand the unique needs of veterans and their families, educate our staff and communities about these unique needs, and coordinate care with VA.

We have previously discussed details of the We Honor Veterans program, and especially our Veteran-to Veteran Volunteer program here.

We hope you can join us for our next free Coffee Chat on Thursday 12/1 at 8:00 am with Don Phelps, Director of Spiritual Care Services at SRMC on “Coping with Grief During the Holidays.” Discover coping mechanisms and rituals of remembrance that will help you and your family through the upcoming Holiday Season. Free, rsvp requested by 11/29 804.840.6454.

For a full listing of upcoming community events, please click here.

If you are a local caregiver, sign up for our monthly e-newsletter with tips here.

Brenda D. Mitchell, RN
CEO, Crater Community Hospice, Inc.

Volunteer in our Memorial Garden on Sat Oct 15


On Saturday October 15, people from all over the Richmond metro region participate in a day of service to give back to their community. Join over 1300 volunteers by participating in our Joy of Blooms Garden Project.

The project is from 9am-1pm. We do need volunteers to be available for the entire time span.

This volunteer opportunity is a maintenance blitz of our Memorial Garden. The garden is a place of remembrance for family members to provide tranquility and a place to reminisce. We have a memorial service scheduled later this fall and want to make sure the garden is looking its best.

Volunteers for this project need to be 16 or older – and any kids need to register with a parent.

Specific Tasks Will Include:

• Cleaning and weeding the garden and surrounding areas
• Putting down and spreading mulch in the flower beds and surrounding perimeters
• Ensuring Memorial bricks are clean and visible
• Plant flowers and other plants
• Trim shrubs, grasses

Our Memorial Garden is located at 3916 South Crater Road Petersburg VA 23805

Please wear loose layers and bring your own water. Bring your own garden gloves if you’d like. Free parking is available in the back parking lot of the office.

We certainly hope the weather cooperates, but we are prepared with a back-up plan in case of rain – if needed volunteers will instead be making new admission care packets for our patients and families.

Volunteers need to pre register – click here!

Registration closes 24 hours before the day, or whenever the project reaches capacity.

We need you to pre-register to make sure we prepare for the correct number of volunteers. We would love to have your group volunteer as a team – as long as there are enough spots remaining – check the registration page – take as many as you’d like! We’d love to have you bring your friends to enjoy time together while supporting Crater Community Hospice!

We will ensure all supplies you need are available, including tools. We will start with a brief orientation of our mission and services and then get to work!

If you have any questions about registering for this project, or other volunteer opportunities, please contact Volunteer Coordinator, Teresa Brockwell at TBrockwell@cratercommunityhospice.org or call (804) 526-4300

Brenda D. Mitchell, RN
CEO, Crater Community Hospice, Inc.

Looking for some great volunteers to join our team!

Join us! Are you looking to give back to your community? Do you find yourself with a little extra time these days – maybe you recently retired, or are an empty nester, or just sent your youngest to kindergarten. Do you coordinate a group looking for community service hours? We need you!

At Crater Community Hospice, volunteers have been part of the care team since 1995. There are many opportunities where your time, talents, and interests can enhance the care we provide to members of our community.

Our in depth orientation and training familiarizes each volunteer with the goals of hospice and ensures a rewarding and successful experience for both the volunteer and the patient. We provide comprehensive training and ongoing support to all volunteers to ensure they have the skills and confidence to be well prepared for their roles. No health care background is required.

In addition to being good listeners, our volunteers are compassionate, reliable, and non-judgmental and enjoy working with all types of people. We welcome volunteers and serve individuals of all faiths and ethnicities. All volunteers must pass a background check prior to volunteering.

We serve patients, and thus need volunteers, in the cities of Petersburg, Colonial Heights, Hopewell, and Emporia as well as the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Greensville, Prince George, Surry, and Sussex.

We have many opportunities for those that want to provide organizational and outreach support:

  • Administration – Duties include filing, copying and faxing, breaking down patient charts, data entry, assembling admissions packets, mailings, documenting and shelving in resource library.
  • Ambassadors – Duties include networking, set up, take down and staffing of information booths, and presentations on hospice care.
  • Board of Directors – As a non-profit, we have a volunteer Board of Directors with oversight and fiduciary responsibility for the organization. If you are interested in learning more about being a board member, please contact the CCH Executive Director.
  • Gardening – Keeping Memorial Garden and landscaped grounds healthy, cultivated, and attractive.
  • Internships – Potentially available for college or graduate students. Contact us with your specific background and interests.
  • Special Projects – Quilting, photography, and special events talents always needed – if you have other skills or interests, please let us know!
  • Thrift Store – Duties include sorting donations, assisting customers, and displaying and pricing merchandise. This is a great project for groups! Assistance needed Monday – Saturday 10am-5pm – no block of time is too small! Learn more about our thrift shop HERE.

There are also many opportunities for those that want to provide direct patient care and grief support:

  • Bereavement – calls, mailings, memorial services, and grief support groups.
  • Patient Family Visits – provide companionship and socialization.
  • Phone Support – calls to patients and caregivers before each weekend and holiday.
  • Pro-bono Professional Services – including lawyers, accountants, beauticians, massage, music, photographers, and notaries.
  • We Honor Veterans Program – active or Veteran Volunteers share life experiences with our veteran patients and perform pinning ceremonies. See more details on this program HERE.
  • Pet Therapy – visit with certified pets.

If you have any questions or for more information on joining our team of volunteers, please contact the CCH Volunteer Coordinator, Teresa Brockwell at TBrockwell@cratercommunityhospice.org or call (804) 526-4300. Please complete an application form on our main volunteer page HERE to be notified of the next training sessions if we have a position matching your interests. We have training sessions scheduled later this month – we hope to see you there!

Honoring America’s Veterans Includes Meeting Their Unique Needs

We Honor Veterans





As the nation honors those who defended our freedoms through their military service on Independence Day, it’s important to remember that they also deserve recognition and compassionate care when dealing with a serious illness. Crater Community Hospice is honored to deliver Veteran-centric care to those who served our country.

As a We Honor Veterans hospice provider, Crater Community Hospice is providing specialized care to Veterans who are facing a life-limiting illness.   The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization in collaboration with the Department of Veterans Affairs created We Honor Veterans to empower hospice and other healthcare providers across America to meet the unique needs of seriously ill Veterans and their families.

Many Americans do not realize that 1 in 4 of all deaths in the U.S. are Veterans. That’s more than 680,000 Veterans every year.  A generation of World War II and Korean War Veterans are facing end-of-life care decisions now, and they are quickly being followed by younger Vietnam War Veterans, many of whom are confronting serious illnesses at an even earlier age.  We see our patient demographics closely matching this national figure. With a quarter of all Crater Community Hospice families having served in the U.S. Armed Forces, we are committed to serving and honoring veterans with hospice support that acknowledges their service and sacrifice.

We do this in several ways, including educating our clinical professionals on an on-going basis to provide individualized care to patients with a history of military service and their specific needs. We also work collaboratively with the Sitter & Barfoot Veterans Care Center and McGuire VA Hospital, and provide Veteran-specific resources in our library.

But one of our most important programs is recruiting and training Veterans to provide specialized volunteer services to Veterans. If you are a Veteran we invite you to become part of this Veteran-to-Veteran Volunteer Program. The program aims to pair Veteran volunteers with Veteran hospice patients.  Veterans are part of a distinct culture with their own common language and experience. When Veterans interact, their common language and experience can form a strong relational bond. The camaraderie created between Veterans has proven to be supportive for all involved. Once paired, Veteran volunteers have the unique ability to relate and connect with each patient that has been proven to be supportive for all involved.

Veteran volunteers:

  • Assist Veterans in telling their life stories
  • Take part in Pinning Ceremonies and other recognition events
  • Offer companionship, support, and friendship by visiting as little as one a month

Comprehensive training is provided to all volunteers and Veteran Volunteers will receive additional training with Veteran-specific content. Please contact Volunteer Coordinator, Teresa Brockwell at TBrockwell@cratercommunityhospice.org or call 804.526.4300 to learn more about this rewarding opportunity.

As we celebrate our nation’s heroes this 4th of July – and every day of the year – we must not forget that it is never too late to say ‘thank you’ to our nation’s Veterans. These fellow Americans have made profound sacrifices in defense of freedom and they deserve our heartfelt thanks and appreciation. Honoring our nation’s Veterans includes supporting them throughout their entire lives, especially at the end.

If you know a Veteran who is in need of the special care hospice and palliative care brings to people facing serious and life-limiting illness, please reach out and help them learn more about the services that hospice and palliative care can provide. Contact us at (804) 526-4300 or info@cratercommunityhospice.org to learn more about the ways we support our nation’s heroes.

For a full listing of upcoming community events, please click here. CCH also provides a free monthly e-newsletter with tips and resources for caregivers. Sign up here.

To all our nation’s Veterans, thank you.

Brenda D. Mitchell, RN

CEO, Crater Community Hospice, Inc.

Crater Thrift Shop Hosts Customer Appreciation Day

The Crater Community Hospice Thrift Shop is hosting a customer appreciation day on Friday May 20th in celebration of the store’s third anniversary! There will be a variety of special promotions to thank the community for their loyal supports. First, there will be one day only 20% to 50% off store-wide sales. In addition, those who spend more than $10 will receive two loyalty card punches. Those who spend more than $30 (after all discounts are applied) will receive a $5 voucher to redeem on a future purchase. Everyone will enjoy refreshments and door prizes. To support the greater community as we celebrate, please bring a non-perishable food item which will be donated to local food banks.

It’s hard to believe it has been more than three years since the Crater Community Hospice Thrift Shop officially opened in April 2013. In just the last fiscal year, there were more than 1800 donations – that’s an average of more than 5 every single day the shop is open. Those donations are processed by manager Karen Sadler and her team of dedicated volunteers. An average of more than 200 volunteer hours are contributed every month as they assist with processing donations, pricing and arranging merchandise, and assisting customers.

Donations are accepted during all regular business hours, Monday – Saturday 10am-5pm. We welcome gently used clothing, books, household items, and furniture. We are not able to accept mattresses, computers, or exercise equipment. All items must come from a smoke-free/chemical-free home. Karen and her team maintain strict standards for what will be sold – other items are donated to be recycled or repurposed.

On any given day the store carries a wide range of goods, including jewelry, collectibles, kitchen items, bedding, toys and games, lamps, craft supplies, small appliances, books, home décor including seasonal items, and an extensive collection of clothes and accessories for men, women, and children. Some of these are included in weekly 50% off sales! While subject to change, you will often find kitchenware on sale every Tuesday, women’s clothes on Wednesday, wall décor on Thursday, kid’s items on Friday, and men’s clothing on Saturday. Monday is a mystery sales day – you never know what it will be, but recent sales have included belts and shoes. Items are processed daily, so visit often to see the latest finds!

Follow the thrift shop on Facebook (“Crater Community Hospice Thrift Shop”) and our brand new Instagram account (@craterthriftshop) to learn of special sales and new items, and like and share the posts to help spread the word within the community.

Crater Community Hospice Thrift Shop has a two-fold mission: to offer high-quality, affordable merchandise, and those proceeds from those sales then provide support for the hospice’s services to families in local communities. The hospice serves the cities of Petersburg, Colonial Heights, Hopewell, and Emporia as well as the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Greensville, Prince George, Surry, and Sussex. Visit the CCH Thrift Shop today and help support your community hospice, providing care since 1995. CCH Thrift Shop is located at 3916 South Crater Road Petersburg VA 23805, phone 804.722.3943. Open Monday – Saturday, 10am-5pm.

2014-2015 Annual Report

412 Families, 362 Patients, 5,811 Volunteer Hours and more facts, figures and stories in our 2014-2015 Annual Report

CLICK HERE to download the full report.

2014-15Annual Report cover