Festival of Trees Opens in Vancouver

November 27, 2009 at 1:23 pm 2 comments

Visit the Festival at the Four Seasons Hotel in Vancouver.

With lots of laughter and excitement,  BC Children’s Hospital Foundation (along with support from presenting sponsor, Union Securities Ltd) opened the annual Festival of Trees event.

This event is taking place in the affable surroundings of the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver as well as on the upper lobby of Pacific Centre.

Regular attendees know that it is one of the first signs of the coming holiday season – and it is one that visitors and locals alike look forward to. The trees, which are lavishly decorated by corporate and individual sponsors, are a treat for all ages.

This year, to help us celebrate the opening of this great event, two-year-old Hannah Schneider and her brother, Holden, lit the first tree with their ‘magic wands,’ while their mom, Jennifer, gave heart-felt thanks to the crowd of 200 for their incredible support of BC Children’s Hospital.

Jennifer is passionate about thanking sponsors like those who support the Festival of Trees because of her daughter, Hannah, who was the image of health at birth but who’s health began to deteriorate a few short weeks later.

Hannah at the Festival of Trees

Hannah’s troubles began at two weeks old, when her heart was racing much too quickly. To get her heartbeat under control, doctors at Children’s needed to administer a drug to restart her heart. After several failed attempts, Jennifer and Hannah’s dad, Jason, were approached with another option – a new trial drug that was still being studied. Knowing that a decision had to be made immediately, and trusting the experience and knowledge of Hannah’s caregivers, the Schneiders opted for the experimental drug that could potentially save their daughter’s life.

The treatment was a success. Two weeks later, Hannah was able to return home with her family.

Cast a vote, by donation, for your favourite tree.

Having Hannah and Holden at the event to help celebrate was incredibly poignant for the crowd – especially in light of the fact that over $143,000 was raised this year by the Festival!  Hannah is a real example of how their sponsorship dollars go directly to helping save kids lives through drug research.

You too can help kids like Hannah by getting into the holiday season and supporting Festival of Trees. Grab a warm drink and spend a quiet afternoon enjoying the forest showcase.  Don’t forget to make a donation and cast your vote  for your favourite tree any time between now and January 3.

Live on Vancouver Island? We have a Festival of Trees for you as well. Join us at the Empress Hotel in Victoria or at the Best Western Barclay Hotel in Port Alberni.

Festival of Trees is open until January 3.


Entry filed under: Terra.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jen  |  November 27, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    Greaty article. Hannah and Holden had an amazing time lighting the tree and having their picture taken. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to speak at the event. It is my priviledge to share Hannah’s story with others and to express how much we appreciate BC Children’s Hospital. Jen Schneider.

  • 2. stacey friedman  |  November 28, 2009 at 9:05 am

    Jen thank you for again sharing your story so corporations and individuals remember that they are doing it for the kids like Hannaha and Gabby. How special to light up the tree with magic wands. Can’t wait to go see the trees this year. Stacey Friedman


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