It’s a Hope tradition that has reached its 21st consecutive year.
The Hope Hospice tree has made a cheerful Christmas addition to the entrance foyer of the Hope recreation centre each December, bringing comfort to those missing a loved one.
Passersby can use the provided tags to write the name of friends, family or even pets that have passed on – then place the note on the tree. As of Tuesday, there were over 100 tags on the tree, which will be in the foyer until Jan. 4.
Mary Norman, co-ordinator for the Fraser Canyon Hospice Society, said the society welcomes donations, though the tree is offered as a free service.
“Very much, the emphasis is to offer an opportunity for people to put the name of a loved one on the tree.”
Norman said on Monday that Barb Sharrers was one of a group of volunteers who initiated the local memorial tree.
“I just spoke to Barbara Sharrers and she said, ‘Twenty-one years ago, it came about to have a place to remember the loved ones we had lost. We invite you to remember a loved one or pet by writing their name on a memorial tag and placing it onto the tree.’
“Barbara said the public are always so delighted to have an opportunity to put a tag onto the tree and have an opportunity to lend a listening ear for those who wish to talk,” Norman said.
She added, “Claudia Cojocar kindly donated the funds to purchase a new Celebrate A Life Tree this year.”
If people wish to donate to the hospice society at any time, they can visit Canadahelps.org and search for the society’s name, or send a cheque to the Fraser Canyon Hospice Society, 1275 Seventh Ave., Hope.