“It gives them the opportunity to feel human.”
Oncology Nurse Traci-Lyn Taylor sums up the value of Judy’s Spa, the fruits of a daughter’s labour.
Judy Colborne was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005. Her daughter, Heather Schroeter, decided to gather friends and family and throw a fundraising bash in her honour. And so the first Pink Party was born.
Sadly, Judy passed shortly after the first party.
But the seed was planted. Ten years and ten parties later, Heather and her supporters have raised over a quarter of a million dollars for breast cancer research and support.
This spring the KGH Foundation was able to open the doors to a serene new space, Judy’s Spa in the Acute Care Oncology ward.
The old 4B Tub Room served its purpose – patients would be painstakingly chair-lifted into an institutional tub basin for their bath. The process was described as “scary and a chore.”
“We wanted to provide a more calming, home-like environment,” says Heather, “a space that was comforting, and safer for patients and the nurses who care for them.”
Functional yet soothing, the new room blends the indulgent atmosphere of a well-appointed spa with practical touches like the deep swing-door tub.
“Patients love it,” says Traci-Lyn. “Being able to run a warm bath, turn down the lights, turn up the music, and safely leave them to enjoy some private time has been an amazing transformation in how we can care for our patients.”
Heather and her passionate corps of volunteers, “Judy’s Girls” they call themselves, have tremendous gratitude for the countless community members who support the Pink Party year after year.
Whether they’ve made financial contributions, shared their expertise and services, or dressed up and attended one of the Pink Parties, Heather is deeply honoured that they’ve helped her continue Judy’s legacy of compassionate community care.