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The “Queen for a Day” program by Sangre De Christo Hospice
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Local hospice continues program making patients ‘Queen for a Day’

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Yolanda Sanchez

Yolanda Sanchez smiles after her hair styling session with Kathleen Kelly, owner of Two Feathers Salon. Sanchez was one of several ladies chosen to receive royal treatment from Sangre de Cristo Community Care and numerous other local businesses and organizations.

Starting last December Sangre de Cristo Community Care, a Hospice program, has been partnering with other businesses and organizations in the community to offer 3 patients a month royal level treatment with their “Queen for a Day” program.

Patients selected for this royal treatment are given a fresh hair styling and nails done, and also receive a cozy soft blanket, fresh cookies, a bouquet of flowers, and to top it off, a tiara.

Sangre de Cristo Community Care Volunteer and Community Outreach Coordinator Cindy Thelen explained that making the program possible takes a lot of community input.

“Edward Jones provides comfy blankets for our queens, Laura DeBella with State Farm gives pens, nail files, chap stick and other commodities, Noah’s Ark furnishes our tiaras, Colie’s Cakes and Pastries provides cookies, and Trinidad Greenhouse provides the flowers we give them,” said Thelen. “Then we have three different hair stylists that will alternate each month. Those are Two Feathers, Bombshells, and the TSJC Cosmetology Department.”

Andrew Hoffman, with Edward Jones, said they were happy to be able to help with this project and proud to see the community giving these individuals attention.

“Once we knew about it, it wasn’t even a question whether or not to get involved,” said Hoffman. “We deal with so many clients that we’ve seen and they’ve passed on and we see a lot of people who are going through tough times and for the elderly, a lot of times they get left on the wayside unfortunately. So this is a way we can help.”

While Thelen is the individual who organizes the royal escapades, it was the Trinidad Community Foundation that brought up the idea originally, Thelen expressed.

“Trinidad Community Foundation (TCF) actually wrote the Bar NI grant that we received to be able to do this program,” said Thelen. “Lou Simpleman with TCF came up with the idea and asked me if Sangre de Cristo Community Care (hospice and home care) would be interested in doing this and I said absolutely. If it weren’t for him bringing it up as an idea we wouldn’t be doing it. His wife, Jo Ann Simpleman, also did great getting more businesses to help out.”

Since it began in December, Sangre de Cristo has given three ladies the royal treatment and they hope to keep sharing the experience with as many as they are able.

“We try to do this for three ladies a month at this point,” said Thelen. “The goal is three but depending on who’s in our service at any given time it might be one for one month and five the next month. We’re shooting for an average of at least three a month. If it turns out that there’s four, that’s ok too.”

Thelen also explained that as the program continues, they hope to be able to add another leg of the program to bring more patients such a day to remember.

“We have to see how everything rolls and right now we’re just doing women, but the whole idea is to get King for a Day going eventually, too,” said Thelen. “We just have to start slow and move into it figuring out the kinks in any of this before taking on that.”

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