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Westlock Tree of Hope campaign enters its ninth year

Donations will go towards upgrading lights at Westlock Continuing Care Centre
Two of the staff and residents of the Westlock Continuing Care Centre pose next to the Tree of Hope set up in the lobby of the facility. So far, the tree is sparsely decorated, but more decorations will help spruce it up. In back are care managers Kimberly Kramer and Taryn Zadunayski. In front are Barb Waterman and Elsie Danake.

WESTLOCK — Westlock and area residents can help bring some comfort to the residents of the Westlock Continuing Care Centre by donating to the ninth annual Tree of Hope campaign, which is now in its ninth year. 

As part of the Tree of Hope campaign, senior’s health manager Meagonn Forstey said there will be two Christmas trees on display at the main entrance of the Westlock Healthcare Centre and the Continuing Care Centre. 

With each donation to the campaign prior to Jan. 7, 2024, ornaments will be placed on the two Christmas trees. Donors may choose to give anonymously or include a name on each ornament, whether it’s their own name, the name of an organization or of a loved one who is no longer with us. 

Donations of all denominations are welcome, though decorations will be created specifically for donations of $10, $20, $25, $50, $100, $500, $1,000 and $2,000. A donation of $5,000 will light an angel atop the Tree of Hope. 

Forstey said last year’s campaign brought in more than $16,000, which allowed the Westlock Healthcare Centre to purchase new stretchers and transport chairs for the cataract surgical program. 

She said this year’s campaign “focuses on bringing comfort to the residents of the Westlock Continuing Care Centre" who have had to adjust to many changes this year, such as staff turnover in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and switching over to ConnectCare for record-keeping. 

Most of the donated funds will be used to upgrade the lights in the centre’s hallways and common spaces. 

“Alberta winters can feel long and dark, and our goal is to make each winter day a bit brighter,” Forstey said, adding that they will also replace some failing equipment in the Adult Day Support Program if there is enough money. 

“Your kindness will mean so much to our residents,” she added. 

All donations are tax-deductible and can be dropped off either at the hospital or Continuing Care Centre front desk. They can also be mailed to either facility. 

All cheques are to be made payable to Alberta Health Services, and the memo portion should state “Westlock Tree of Hope.” 

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