St. Francis Elves hard at work

COLIN KERR
Staff Reporter

BARRY’S BAY – Each year at this time a group of ladies gets together to assemble letters: fold, stuff, seal, stamp. 2,500 letters is this year’s goal. It takes all day and is done in three shifts – but it’s worth it.

This year the St. Francis Valley Healthcare Foundation’s Tree of Lights campaign hopes to raise $70,000 for hospital equipment.

Although they have trouble recollecting just how long the campaign has been running – about twenty years, they guess – the individual ladies know how long they have been a part of it, and many of them have been involved for more than 10 years.

Ruth Yantha says she has being doing it for 11 years now, and states that she can “fold leaflets in my sleep now.” Over time they have become more efficient, she said. But this year is a bit different. You would think that the pandemic would help people see how important the hospital is. “We need the most up-to-date equipment to be able to treat people,” she added.

This year the campaign is especially crucial, Yantha observed, with the gift shop closed.

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