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Hospice SLO County seeks entries for ‘On this Side of Goodbye’ contest 

Hospice SLO County seeks entries for 'On this Side of Goodbye' contest

Community members are encouraged to submit essays, poetry and artwork to spread awareness

–Hospice SLO County is holding the Fourth Annual “On this Side of Goodbye,” contest in recognition of National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD) on April 16.

Community members are invited to submit their experiences with saying goodbye in times of dying through essays, poetry, or artwork throughout the month of April. Three chosen entries will be publicized on their website.

“Experiencing the death of someone in our life is unique for each of us,” said Shannon McOuat, Executive Director of Hospice SLO County. “We might find ourselves touched or challenged in unexpected ways. This is an opportunity to honor, create, express, share, and remember those who have died in our lives.”

The annual “On This Side of Goodbye,” contest aims to spread awareness about the importance of advance care planning. NHDD exists to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning. NHDD stresses the importance of talking with your loved ones about your health care wishes and documenting those wishes by completing an advance directive.

“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has made advance care planning more meaningful for many people,” said McOuat.

For over 40 years, Hospice SLO County has provided free services to individuals coping with a life-limiting illness, end of life, or grief. Among other services, professionally trained volunteers and staff provide individual and group grief counseling for those who are grieving the death of a loved one. The volunteer hospice organization also provides in-home respite for caregivers, an End-of-Life Doula program, and a Pet Peace of Mind program. Services are offered throughout San Luis Obispo County.

  • Entries are due Thursday, April 29, 2021, at 4 p.m.
  • Acceptable mediums include essays, poetry, and artwork.


To download guidelines and registration forms, visit

Any community member in San Luis Obispo County may submit an essay, a poem, or a piece of artwork. Individuals under 18 years of age will need a parent or guardian’s signature.

For grief counseling services, call Hospice SLO County at (805) 544-2266.


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