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Angel Tree is back for a fourth year

Program helps community get Christmas gifts to those who may not otherwise have anything under the tree
Better At Home’s Angel Tree, at Save-On Foods. (Barry Coulter photo)

Angels are indeed among us, as evidenced by a community-driven program helps people who need a little extra “merry” during the holiday season.

The 50+ Angel Tree program, run by Cranbrook’s Better At Home, is in its fourth year making Christmas brighter for everyone. And the program is seeking nominations, for those who reside in their own home in the Cranbrook area, but for various reasons may not see any gifts under the tree come Christmas Day.

Shauna Beaulac, one of the organizers of the annual Angel Tree program, says it is growing every year, from more than 50 nominations in the program’s first year to more than 160 last year. This shows that there is a need in the community, but also that the community wants to step in, with compassion, and help out.

“Though it ultimately means that people are in need, it’s exciting to know that we’re all here to help,” she said. “The feeling of knocking on someone’s door, who’s not expecting a present, is the best feeling in the world.”

Anyone ages 50 and over can nominate themselves, as well as friends, family members, doctors, caregivers, etc. Nomination forms are available through the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce, Save On Foods and Cranbrook Family Connections. The nomination deadline is Friday, Dec. 9.

Each recipient fills out a card with their gender, age, and three wish list items.

Those who want to help out can head over to Save-On Foods in Cranbrook, where the Angel Tree is on display, and choose an angel card from the tree. The cards are anonymous, but give enough information to buy a gift. For example it will have the age of the person, their size (small, medium, large) and the three things on their wish list.

You can then get the gift, and bring it, unwrapped, to the Cranbrook Chamber or Cranbrook Family Connections by December 14. A team will wrap it, and deliver to the recipient in time for Christmas.

If you can’t get do the shopping yourself, but still want to contribute to the program, you can still take part by etransferring a donation to, and they’ll do the shopping for you.

The community is, as always, stepping up in a big way to help out. All recipients will get a turkey dinner with all the trimmings, courtesy of the Firehall Kitchen and Tap.

As well, this year will feature a dessert bag for every recipient, courtesy of Break and Butter Bakery in Kimberley. The Cranbrook Caregivers Association is donating a box of N-95 masks to anyone who wants one. (“A lot of our recipients are older, and still want to wear masks,” Beaulac explains). And students at Gordon Terrace Elementary School have created a Christmas card for every recipient, which will be delivered along with each gift and dessert bag.

For more information, call 250-489-9521, or 250-426-2943. Or email

Barry Coulter

About the Author: Barry Coulter

Barry Coulter had been Editor of the Cranbrook Townsman since 1998.
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