www.montereycountynow.com JUNE 13-19, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 11 As Siobhan Greene was approaching retirement as CEO of the Hospice Giving Foundation, the board of directors wanted to do something to honor Greene’s legacy as a change agent in Monterey County. Her long list of accomplishments over 11 years led to a strengthening of the local safety net for endof-life situations and grief support. Wanting to create a fund named in her honor, board members asked her: What would she want the fund to be used for? Greene had an answer, something she had sensed was missing in the community. Over the years, the foundation received requests for funds to cover situations that were just outside their usual scope. Like the man who wanted to be buried in Mexico but his family lacked the funds to fulfill his wish, the woman who desired to go home before she died but her house needed to be thoroughly cleaned first, or the children in foster care whose mother died but there was no money for a funeral. The result was the creation of the Siobhan Greene Care and Dignity Fund, started with $50,000 contributed by individual board members to cover the first year of operation, with a goal of raising an additional $500,000 over three years to make the fund permanent. “The fund was established because all of us have grown in our awareness of the hardships and the challenges people are facing when their loved ones are at end of life,” Greene says, adding that while they can encourage people to seek hospice care, “there are gaps in that care that fall on in-home caregivers.” The money could be used to pay for respite care for someone in hospice while their caregiver family member takes time off, or paying for temporary care in a skilled nursing facility. Hospice benefits don’t always pay for such support, Greene says. The fund could also be used for things like delivered meals or house cleaners so caregivers can take time to relax. “People get really, really strapped at this period of time in their lives,” Greene adds. After a nationwide search for a new CEO, the board found someone close to home, Erin White, who previously worked as director of philanthropy and community partnerships at York School and director of development at Santa Catalina School. White is now charged with raising the additional $500,000 between now and 2027, with a goal of distributing a minimum of $50,000 annually to requesting nonprofits. (The way the foundation is set up, it cannot distribute funds directly to individuals.) White expects they will be able to start answering requests by this fall. Greene says that while the fund is in her name, “nothing happens in a vacuum.” She credits the HGF staff and board for working on the foundation’s many initiatives that included providing critical support and guidance during the pandemic and creation of the Heal Together project, offering grief counseling and other support to the community, among others. Living Legacy A new fund to support families facing end-oflife challenges honors an outgoing hospice leader. By Pam Marino Incoming CEO Erin White began on April 1. She has been working side-by-side with Siobhan Greene, whose last day will be June 30, after 11 years at the helm of Hospice Giving Foundation. NEWS “People get really, really strapped at this time in their lives.” DANIEL DREIFUSS