Wish Tree returns for 32nd year

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The long-standing Chatham-Kent Health Alliance Foundation Christmas Wish Tree tradition is now underway for its 32nd year.

The campaign provides an opportunity for members of the community to honour the memory of a loved one by making a donation in their name. For each donation, a light will be added to the Christmas Wish Tree in recognition.

Last year, the CKHA Foundation added a new element to the campaign, honouring four individuals throughout the community who were passionate supporters of the hospital or highly dedicated to making positive change in Chatham-Kent. This year, the Foundation looks to expand on this initiative and will honour nine members of the local community, including Brenda Burgess, Helen Coyne, Pauline Holek, Carol Koke, Ed Koke, Audrey Kraemer, Gayle McClintock, Dr. John Roe, and Ron Tack.

“We know the Christmas Wish Tree holds a special place in the hearts of our community,” Bob Hockney, CKHA Foundation board chair, said in a media release. “And it’s becoming even more meaningful as members of our community, who have been so influential, are honoured and recognized in such a special way.”

Each honouree will be commemorated with a purple light that will be placed on the tree and lit as part of a special dedication of their legacy during this year’s Tree Lighting Ceremonies taking place at CKHA’s Wallaceburg site on Dec. 15 at 6 p.m. and at CKHA’s Chatham site on Dec. 16 at 6 p.m.

With the expanded re-opening measures, guests will once again be welcomed to attend in person for both ceremonies.

“We are so excited to welcome our community back to celebrate our memorial tree lighting ceremonies in person,” Mary Lou Crowley, CKHA Foundation president & CEO, said. “The essence of the Christmas Wish Tree is really about bringing our community together to celebrate the memory of family members and friends.”

For folks who are unable to join in person, you can watch a live broadcast on YourTV Cogeco channel 700 and via Facebook Live through the Foundation’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ckhafoundation.

This year’s campaign has a fundraising goal of $100,000, with proceeds supporting the purchase of a new patient ventilator for CKHA’s Chatham site and five new vital sign monitors for CKHA’s Wallaceburg site.

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