People can use the provided tags to write the name of friends, family or even pets that have passed on and attach them to the Hope Hospice Christmas tree. Barry Stewart/Hope Standard

People can use the provided tags to write the name of friends, family or even pets that have passed on and attach them to the Hope Hospice Christmas tree. Barry Stewart/Hope Standard

Hope Hospice tree brings Christmas cheer

Passers-by can use the provided tags to write the name of friends, family or even pets that have passed

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.