The annual Festival of Trees is hosted at the Bay Centre in Victoria. (Ragnar Haagen/News staff)

Handmade forest grows inside Bay Centre in support of sick kids

Festival of Trees raises funds for B.C. Children’s Hospital

The magic of the festive season transforms the Bay Centre once again, as a lush forest of hand-decorated trees takes root in the shopping centre in support of B.C. Children’s Hospital.

Over 650,000 people are expected to take part in the 27th annual Festival of Trees, whether as sponsors showcasing their community spirit by decorating their trees in a unique way, voters casting ballots for their favourite trees or shoppers just enjoying the sight as they go about their holiday shopping.

The annual fundraiser raises money to help meet the most critical health care needs of kids in the community.

RELATED: Sooke Festival of Trees adds to the fun

On average, 22 kids from Vancouver Island are treated at B.C. Children’s Hospital every day – almost one every hour.

Last year’s Festival of Trees raised $170,000 and went towards research into childhood diseases, rehabilitation therapies and equipment – including a new infant transport monitor for the pediatric intensive care unit that helps keep sick children safe by continuously and accurately monitoring their condition.

Trees are on display at the Bay Centre now through Jan. 7.

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