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Grant number: FT-59796-12

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John Eric Baugher
University of Southern Maine (Portland, ME 04104-9300)

Understanding the Emotional and Spiritual Journeys of Hospice Volunteers: A Humanistic Inquiry

Hospice volunteers come from many walks of life, and understanding the diverse needs and perspectives of these caregivers is particularly important with the coming "silver tsunami" of the aging baby boom generation. What meanings do encounters with dying persons have for hospice volunteers, and how do those meetings at the edge of life and death shape their caring capacities and their own journeys as mortal and moral beings? Drawing on interviews with 65 hospice volunteers, this book project examines the commonalities and subtle differences in the emotional and spiritual journeys of volunteers in Christian, Buddhist, and more mainstream hospice settings in the United States and Germany. The project addresses the Bridging Cultures focus of the NEH call for proposals by helping to expand Americans' understanding of other perspectives and ways of being in the world and by exploring the variety of cultural influences and subcultural milieus within the modern hospice movement.

Project fields:

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
7/1/2012 – 8/31/2012