Friends of Bethany decorate the Giving Tree at Shoppers Drug Mart with tags listing the gifts residents at Bethany would like to receive. (left to right) Patricia Granik, Connie Cartwright, Janet Swinden, Janet Lawrence and Sheila Klein Members of the committee not shown: Allyssa Bremner, Sandra Simpson (Bethany Volunteer Coordinator) and Sue Langreb Photo by Myra Nicks/Sylvan Lake News

The Giving Tree is back

Friends of Bethany encourage community to give the gift of time and gifts for Christmas

Friends of Bethany are teaming up with Shoppers Drug Mart for their seventh year, placing a giving tree in the store with tags hanging from it filled with the gift wishes of residents in Bethany Sylvan Lake, long term care facility centre.

”It’s been very popular. Last year I think the tree was up for three or four days and all the tags were gone,” said Connie Cartwright, one of the Friends of Bethany committee members.

Each anonymous tag has a list of what residents have asked for specifically. One resident this year specifically asked for chocolate just as long as it’s not Ferrero Rocher.

For those residents who have limited communication ability, centre workers who know the residents more intimately work with Friends of Bethany volunteers to come up with items to write on the tags.

There are two ways to participate in The Giving Tree. Members of the community can give a gift or give the gift of their time.

Starting today, Nov. 21 you can stop by the Shoppers Drug Mart at 8 5043 50A Street and choose a gift tag off the tree. Members of the community can purchase a gift between $15 and $20 and deliver the gift in a gift bag (not wrapped) with the chosen tag and deliver to Bethany Sylvan Lake, 4700-47 Av. The last day to drop off gifts is Dec. 16.

Friends of Bethany organized in 2011 to ensure the residents receive more recreational opportunities and entertainment. Volunteering to visit with residents, helping with recreation and special events, and providing entertainment are just some of the ways to give of your time.

For more information contact Bethany Volunteer Coordinator Sandra Simpson: (403)887-7741 or by email:

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