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Compassus sends local nurse practitioner to assist health care nonprofit in South Africa

Sarah Spencer Compassus

PRINCETON, W.Va. – Compassus recently sent a team of 12 volunteers, including nurse practitioner Sarah Spencer of Princeton, to assist Living Hope, the company’s sister hospice program in Cape Town, South Africa. The Compassus interdisciplinary team, which included physicians, registered nurses, a hospice aide, social worker, bereavement coordinator, chaplain and corporate colleague, spent a week in Cape Town working side-by-side with Living Hope clinicians.

“Both Compassus and Living Hope demonstrate a vision that aligns with my personal goal of community service. I’m grateful to Compassus for providing me this experience,” said Spencer. “Though our team of colleagues had never met prior to the trip, we immediately developed a cohesive bond around the Compassus culture of compassion and integrity.”

Through a partnership started in 2011, Compassus donates monetary aid, medical supplies and health care expertise to support Living Hope’s health care and hospice services in the impoverished township communities of Cape Town. Compassus matches voluntary employee donations to the dollar and last year raised more than $73,000 for the ministry-based nonprofit.

“My goal for the Living Hope trip was to broaden my perspective of other cultures and communities. Throughout the trip I experienced every emotion, especially inspiration and awe,” Spencer continued. “At their core, people from all over the globe seek love, acceptance and community. The impact of this experience will forever change the way I relate to my colleagues and patients for the better.”

Living Hope offers health care services, counseling and education to more than 200,000 underprivileged residents in Cape Town. Its programs focus on improving general health and hospice care, HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention, and economic empowerment. Living Hope provides health care for more than 36,000 South Africans annually through in-home visits, medical clinics and a 22-bed inpatient hospice center.

“Compassus has a calling to deliver compassionate care not only in our local communities but around the world. Serving alongside Living Hope allows us the opportunity to live out this higher purpose,” said Stori Pugh, executive director for Compassus – Princeton. “We are proud of our team and the work they do for the people of South Africa and hope it inspires others to join the effort to advance the well-being of those facing life-limiting illnesses.”

For more information about Compassus, visit our Princeton, West Virginia page or call (304) 431-2000.