An endowment is created by a donor from a gift containing a legal stipulation that the original gift may never be expended. These gifts are held and invested in perpetuity by UC Davis Health System and the UC Davis Foundation for the purpose of generating a permanent expendable income stream from the return on the gift for the purpose the donor desires.

Endowed gifts may be for restricted or unrestricted purposes and are particularly important to UC Davis due to their permanency. These gifts permit planning for programs into the far future.

Endowed chairs and professorships are established with initial investments that create annual distributions to provide support in perpetuity for particular areas of care, teaching, research and service. The steady stream of funding gives faculty members extra support they need to:

  • Identify new projects;
  • Launch multistep research endeavors;
  • Explore multidisciplinary collaborations;
  • Recruit additional talented faculty;
  • Hire research assistants;
  • Perfect new therapies;
  • Improve the curriculum, and
  • Pursue community partnerships.

Establishing endowed chairs and professorships are acts of great generosity and vision. Donors who create an endowment do so because they understand the importance of supporting the institution not only during their own lifetime, but for generations to come. These visionary individuals, families, and organizations become an extraordinary resource for UC Davis and our talented faculty.

Medical Director Endowed Chair: $1.5M Often times, the Hospice Medical Director position is filled by a volunteer-a young physician establishing him/herself or a physician who is close to retiring. Since the inception of Hospice programs, most medical providers have come to recognize the need to establish a full time, paid position for the Medical Director as they recognize the physician’s role as an integral team member of the core hospice team demands more time. There are many roles that can be filled by an active Hospice Medical Director including overseeing the training of the next generation of hospice physicians, nurses, and volunteers.

Pediatric Hospice Staff Support Endowment: $500,000 Pediatric hospice care is both a philosophy and an organized method for delivering competent, compassionate, and consistent care to children with chronic, complex and/or life-threatening conditions. This care focuses on enhancing quality of life, minimizing suffering, optimizing function, and providing opportunities for personal and spiritual growth. Hospice care is achieved through a combination of active and compassionate therapies intended to comfort and support the child, as well as family members and other significant people in the child’s life. Effective management of pain and other distressing symptoms, together with psychosocial and spiritual care, are of critical importance beginning at diagnosis and continuing throughout the entire course of a child’s life and beyond. Funding this endowment will allow UC Davis Hospice to hire an on-call, per-diem employee to work with pediatric patients in the program.

Psychiatric Endowed Professorship: $1M From the earliest stages of the modern hospice movement, there was an acknowledgement of the depth of psychological distress that many dying patients may experience. Describing the management of pain in patients with terminal cancer, Dame Cicely Saunders, the British physician widely credited with establishing modern standards of hospice care, observed that “mental distress may be perhaps the most intractable pain of all.” In her later writings, Saunders articulated the concept of Total Pain, now embodied in the interdisciplinary approach of modern-day hospice care. Within Total Pain, Saunders placed emotional distress alongside physical pain and social and spiritual problems, arguing that effective care of dying patients requires expert-level attention to the relief of suffering in each of these domains. Whereas in the early years of its development hospice care seldom involved psychiatrists, the past decade has seen significant progress in integrating psychiatry into palliative care settings.  As an extension of this progress, the UC Davis Hospice Program seeks to establish an Endowed Professorship in Psychiatric Palliative Care at UC Davis. The position is aimed at enhancing hospice care, by bringing specialist-level expertise to addressing the emotional distress of hospice patients the support of their loved ones. The Endowed Professorship in Hospice and Psychiatry seeks to support the integration of psychiatry into the care of dying patients and the support of their loved ones. The candidate, with combined training or experience in psychiatry and palliative care, would play a leadership role in addressing the emotional distress of hospice patients and their caregivers, through:

  • Early identification and management of psychological sources of suffering
  • Education to hospice clinicians about strategies to identify and relieve emotional distress
  • Care coordination and consultation with primary providers for patients with coexisting mental illness
  • Strengthening of bereavement programs
  • Development of support programs for hospice clinical staff to prevent burnout

Healing Arts Therapist/Child Life Endowment: $500,000  Art therapy can help relieve stress, reduce anxiety and improve quality of life. Creative arts are used to assist healing by offering tools for self-expression while the patients and their families cope with symptoms, stress or traumatic experiences. The act of creating art can be therapeutic. Engagement in creation of art offers children a restorative diversion that can stimulate their creative energies and boost their spirits through immersion in color, texture and form. The art sessions, which are open to patients and their family members, give patients an opportunity to mingle and socialize in a supportive and relaxing environment. Funding this endowment will allow UC Davis Hospice to hire an on-call, per-diem employee to work with pediatric patients in the program as well as pediatric members of patient’s families.

Program Support

Making a current use gift will allow UC Davis Hospice to support events and bereavement programs throughout the year.

Annual "Celebrate Life!" Event-$5,000  "Host" the annual "Celebrate Life!" wine tasting and silent auction event with proceeds benefitting the hospice program. Typical attendance is 100-150 people. This year we hope to increase attendance by raising awareness in the community. Each year, we set a goal to raise $20,000 to benefit the Hospice in Our Community programs. The benefits of ‘hosting” this event will be prominent display of company logo (if applicable) on all advertising, flyers and invitations as being the "host" of the event. The host would also receive eight tickets and have an opportunity to address the attendees to explain why they are sponsoring the event. We would also place either a tent card or document on each table stating "UC Davis Hospice's Annual "Celebrate Life!" generously sponsored by...". There will also be a table available for any marketing or leave behind materials the host would like to bring. This is a great opportunity to take photos with Jack MacMillan, M.D., medical director and volunteers for marketing purposes.

Young Adult Bereavement Art Support Group-$2,500 This is an eight week grief support group for any young adult between the ages of 17 and 24 who is dealing with the death of someone close to them. This group is provided twice a year in the evening, meeting 90 minutes each week. This group is specifically designed for the needs of this vulnerable age group, incorporating art modalities to provide alternative means of expression of grief.

Thanksgiving Dinner Program-$2,500 All families who are participating in the hospice program receive a prepared Thanksgiving dinner, regardless of income or ability to pay. Our team understands the need for support and time with families during the holidays. Providing a Thanksgiving dinner to the family is one way to help them through a difficult time. The dinners are purchased from a local supermarket (typically Raley's) and our hospice volunteers deliver them to the families. At any given time, we could have 80 patients in our program. Should a donor decide to sponsor this program, a card would be placed with each dinner stating "Thanksgiving dinner generously donated by...."

Bereavement Support Groups-$1,500 each

General Bereavement Support Group. This is a six week long group that is open to any adult grieving the loss of a loved one. This group is provided four times a year, and at day time and evening schedules. The group meets once a week for 90 minutes for those six weeks to address the issues of loss and to encourage a healthy grief process.

Parents of a Pediatric-aged Child Grief Support Group. This is an eight week support group open to any parent who has lost a pediatric aged child. This group is provided once a year in the evening, meeting for 90 minutes each week for the eight weeks.

Volunteer Recognition Event-$1,500 Each year, UC Davis Hospice holds a luncheon to thank the volunteers for their hard work and dedication to our program. At this event, we would have a sign stating "Thank you for hosting this year's volunteer recognition lunch. We appreciate your support."

We appreciate your interest in supporting UC Davis Hospice. To learn more, contact

Health Sciences Development