By Jordan Parker
The Gull Lake Special Care Centre is lighting blue bulbs in memory of the town’s loved ones.
Blue Christmas is an event where, for a $5 donation, people in the community can have a name on a decoration and a light lit for a loved one who they want to commemorate. “This is for everyone who is thinking of someone who has passed away,” said Lee-Anne Newsham, the centre’s recreation coordinator.
The event has been going on for three years, and has been popular within Gull Lake. “We have a Christmas tree outside, and we have blue lights on it as well as decorations. We fill it with the names of those people with to remember,” she said.
“A lot of people are upset this time of year as they remember loved ones, and this is a way to celebrate them at Christmas.”
She says the seniors also really respond to the event.
“They’ve also suffered losses. It gives them a positive outlet to think about those who have passed before them.”
All proceeds from the event will be going to the town’s handi-van.
“We really need a mobility van for the residents of Autumn House, this centre, and the community in general,” said Newsham.
Susan Davies, director of the board trying to acquire a new handi-van, says getting a new one is imperative.
“The care centre uses the handi-van a lot, and they saw this as a way to help promote the purchase of a new one,” she said.
“They felt this would help them do something to help raise the necessary dollars.”
Right now the group has about $14,000 raised from different community efforts, but they still have a long way before they reach their $80,000 goal.
“This is totally a community endeavour. Even the old one that’s on its last legs was bought by the Kinettes. They turned it over once we got a handi-van committee,” said Davies.
Some fundraisers went on early in the year and there are efforts ongoing, but there is no huge push right now besides Blue Christmas.
“Prior to Christmas we don’t go for big fundraisers. If it’s a necessary evil early in the new year, we’ll begin trying. We want to have the bus on the road in early spring,” said Davies.
“This belongs to the community, and we want everyone to be able to use it.”
Davies is overjoyed that Blue Christmas supports the handi-van.
“The fact they’re incorporating van profits into helping people recognize loved ones is great. It really is amazing for the community,” she said.
“To put a new handi-van on the road for seniors is an amazing goal to shoot for. Every $5 for a lightbulb counts, and we appreciate the community for it.”
Via: Gull Lake Advance Extra