New Group Forms to Fulfill Dreams of Hospice Patients

A new Burlington Community High School club is working to fulfill the wishes of Great River Hospice patients.

The 40 members of the new DreamCatchers chapter have planned a fundraising rally Wednesday, Nov. 18, at Aldo Leopold Middle School, 3075 Sunnyside, Burlington. The doors will open at 6 p.m. for a silent auction and raffle ticket sales. Caitlin Crommett, founder of the international DreamCatchers organization, and representatives from Great River Hospice will begin speaking at 6:30 p.m. Refreshments will be available.

Crommett founded the organization in 2009 when she was a 15-year-old high school sophomore. The Burlington student group is the first DreamCatchers club in Iowa.

“We are really excited to start this up. It is good for the students to be involved in something so real that provides experience that extends beyond the walls of the high school,” said Cody Wright, President of the BHS DreamCatchers group.

“The club is a partnership between the school, Great River Health Systems and a business working together for the common goal of helping hospice patients. It’s like an adult version of the Make-a-Wish Foundation,” said Amy Burkhart, Great River Hospice community liaison. “Curtis Cloke heard Caitlin Crommett speak last year and wanted to bring DreamCatchers to our community. His business, Acuity Finanical, is sponsoring her trip, and it has donated money to help the club fulfill its first wish.”

Great River Hospice staff have been making patients’ wishes come since it began in 2002. They have included taking a patient on an airplane ride, having a roller-skating birthday party for a patient’s daughter and planning a luau for a patient who had always wanted to visit Hawaii.

“We want to expand our ability to do these types of things for patients by igniting the passion of these young people,” Burkhart said. “DreamCatchers provides the opportunity to do it.”

For more information, please call Burkhart at (319) 768-3392.