For Immediate Release

June 14, 2018

Kayla Arnesen, APR

The University of Colorado, in partnership with The Denver Hospice, is proud to announce funding from Next Fifty Initiative

AURORA, June 14, 2018 — The University of Colorado, in partnership with The Denver Hospice, is proud to announce new funding in March 2018 by the NextFifty Initiative, a nonprofit Foundation focused on improving the landscape of aging.

The funded project expands an Advance Care Planning Volunteer Certification Program for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Individuals. The program trains and certifies individuals — with a special focus on LGBT individuals — to facilitate effective conversations for advance care planning through the RELATE model of communication – an evidence-based, relationship-centered communication model.

With the population of Americans age 65 and older expected to double to 98 million by 2060, NextFifty Initiative was formed to seek, and fund projects, ideas, technology and innovations that improve the lives of those who are aging and their caregivers. “This Pride Month, we are excited to announce how this funding allows our partnership to build capacity in the LGBT community to recognize needs for meaningful conversations as we age,” said Dr. Carey Candrian, co-principal investigator at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. “NextFifty Initiative’s support allows us to empower community volunteers with communication skills for advance care planning discussions.”

The LGBT older adult population is highlighted in Healthy People 2020 as a national health priority because LGBT individuals frequently encounter more prejudice as they age. Compared to heterosexual individuals, LGBT individuals are twice as likely to age alone and three times more likely to live in poverty. This NextFifty funding promotes the opportunity to provide community-based support to LGBT individuals to talk about their wishes and avoid undesired medical care.

“The University of Colorado and The Denver Hospice community/academic partnership was selected in NextFifty’s first round of grant recipients because we see the potential in its mission to positively impact people in their second 50 years,” said Margaret Franckhauser, president and CEO of NextFifty Initiative. “We offer our congratulations for being selected and look forward to a wonderful partnership that brings progress and change.”

About The University of Colorado and The Denver Hospice Partnership

Utilizing a long-standing collaboration, the University of Colorado and The Denver Hospice teams are expanding the volunteer training and certification program to improving the aging experience and well-being of LGBT individuals through high-quality, person-centered conversations around end of life wishes and advance care planning. “Learning how to have meaningful conversations around advance care planning is an invaluable gift and we are thrilled to have the opportunity from NextFifty to continue to spread awareness of this important message”, said Susan Lasker Hertz, Director of Hospice Services at The Denver Hospice. More information is available about the program by contacting Lierin Flanagan, Advance Care Planning Coordinator, at or Advanced Care Planning Certification Training.

About NextFifty Initiative

NextFifty Initiative is an independent, Colorado-based, nonprofit organization. The organization was formed to create brighter, longer and healthier futures that unlock the potential of communities through an advanced grant making approach. Through this work, communities are positioned to fully benefit from the wisdom and diverse experiences of a thriving aging population. NextFifty Initiative focuses on both proactive and responsive grant making designed to support concepts, projects and innovations that will benefit generations for years to come.


About The Denver Hospice

The Denver Hospice is the region’s leading, largest and most trusted not-for-profit provider of life-enhancing hospice and palliative care. That means we offer more expertise, more resources and a more complete continuum of compassionate care to patients facing life-limiting illnesses and end-of-life transition. For more information, visit

Contact Us

Thank you for reaching out to The Denver Hospice. Please send us an email and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt