The large fir Christmas tree, twinkling with lights and ornaments, lightens the mood at Jeneece Place.
“We gotta throw in some Christmas cheer,” said Jackie Adamthwaite, Children’s Health Foundation co-ordinator of special events.
“Anything that can take my mind off things,” said guest Adriana Spighi.
She hustled to Victoria from her home in Haida Gwaii after her daughter was rushed to Victoria General Hospital, where doctors were trying to keep the mom-to-be from delivering at 33 weeks pregnant.
“This place is incredible,” said Spighi, who had been at the house for three days. “I walked in and it blew me away.”
The concerned mother and soon-to-be grandmother didn’t even know the facility existed and hadn’t planned accommodation. Finding out about Jeneece Place eased some of the stress.
More than 35 volunteers helped dress up the facility outside and inside. Spighi helped in an attempt to get her mind off of medical concerns.
Early in December staff at Jeneece Place received dozens of donations of ornaments and lights for the house and about 10 eager volunteers hung the exterior lights.
“We do this to bring any amount of happiness to families that are going through such hard times,” said Jessica Woollard, communications officer for Children’s Health Foundation.
Jeneece Place currently seeks donations of food to stock the pantry for guest families.