Special tree gives twice to health trusts
Okotoks: Sheep River Health Trust’s Avenue of Trees raises $23,000
Wednesday, Dec 20, 2017 06:00 am
It’s the tree of life.
The tree that received top-bid at the annual Sheep River Trust’s annual Avenue of Trees auction not only helped the woman who decorated it, but will also benefit moms bringing new life into the Foothills.
Costco’s spectacular tree was sold for a whopping $2,700 at the annual auction at the Okotoks Recreation Centre on Dec. 9.
Proceeds from the 10 trees on the auction block sold for more than $9,000, which will go toward the High River District Health Foundation’s Delivering a Better Experience campaign supporting renovations of the High River Hospital maternity ward.
Sharri Wyshynski of Okotoks Costo helped build the Fan Favourite winning tree – after not being able to contribute due to illness in 2016.
“It was so amazing to be helpful and to give back after being off work for a year-and-a-half,” Wyshynski said. “I helped with the tree in 2015 and it won the most-liked tree. I was able to do it this year and I am super thrilled.”
She said there was plenty of support from her friends at Okotoks Costco.
“I am guessing more than 40 hours went into decorating the tree,” she said.
The Costco tree was sold twice – once for $1,400 and then again for $1,300.
Av Nair of Okotoks initially purchased it for $1,400. However, he donated it back and it was then sold to Gaylene Schell for $1,300.
“Why give it back? Why not,” Nair said. “I already have a tree and it is going towards a great cause. It’s a beautiful tree and where it went, it will make them happy.
Schell was delighted to end up with it.
“I love this tree – she has done such a good job,” Schell said. “And it is going to such a good cause. My daughter is a nurse and I know what is involved in health care through her.
“It’s a wonderful cause.”
The Costco tree had elves working overtime there were so many toys under it.
Schell has donated the many toys, which were generously placed by Costco under the tree, to charity.
Tanya Thorn, the Sheep River Health Trust fund development officer, said teaming up to help the maternity ward at High River Hospital was a natural fit.
“It’s regional health care, right?” Thorn said. “Whether you live in Okotoks or High River you are using those facilities. It just seems natural sense to support each other. They (the High River and District Health Care Foundation) were able to help us with a project at the Oilfields Hospital, so we are helping them with this expansion.”
The moms in the MD of Foothills and Okotoks will appreciate it.
Approximately 50 per cent of births at the maternity ward are from Okotoks or the MD.
The cost of the project is $1.4 million of which the High River foundation is hoping to raise $500,000. The remaining funds will come from the High River foundation’s reserves.
The Avenue of Trees and the Mistletoe Market raised approximately $23,000 for the Sheep River Health Trust.