The Manitoba Palliative Memory Tree is back at the St. Vital after nearly two years in storage.
The tree was first erected in 1987 to help the Winnipeggers recognize and remember loved ones who have passed away.
The COVID-19 pandemic meant the project went online for two holiday seasons.
Now the 18-foot tree is back in the mall so people can visit it in person. It was assembled by volunteers on Sunday night.
“We are thrilled to bring the Tree of Memory back to the St. Vital.
“Virtual trees were a good temporary solution last year, but the real heart of the program is provided by our volunteers.
“Without the safe space they created and a loving ear, the tree wouldn’t be the same.”
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Visitors to the tree will be asked to follow COVID-19 safety procedures, including marking line separations, extra cleaning on tables where visitors fill out cards, and speaking to volunteers wearing masks.
Those unable to visit the tree in person can still submit their cards online. A volunteer will write the message on your behalf and hang it on the tree.
“We want to give everyone the opportunity to remember and honor their loved ones at the tree, regardless of their circumstances,” Gurke said.
The Tree of Memory will stay at the mall until noon on Christmas Eve.
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