Country Christmas goes virtual
The 29th Annual Hospice Christmas Auction in Prineville will look a little different this year, but the important thing is that the event is going to move forward.
St. Charles Foundation will host a virtual version of its annual Hospice Christmas Auction on Saturday, Dec. 5. The beloved community event will continue to feature a live auction of beautiful handmade quilts and elaborately decorated trees, plus a silent auction and raffles.
The decision was made to modify the event to a fully virtual experience in light of an increasing number of positive COVID-19 cases in Central Oregon. While the decision was difficult, St. Charles Health System recognizes the need for community members to stay home and stay safe.
Crook County School District continues to hold in-person classes and has maintained the health and wellness of school-aged children and educators. The health system does not want to jeopardize the great efforts of Crook County Public Health, the Crook County School District, and the community, which has allowed children to return to school in-person.
Organizers are determined to continue the tradition, however, by implementing the virtual online auction versus the original intended hybrid plan of an open house and online auction. Laurie Jackson, St. Charles' administrator of community and palliative care, home health and hospice, said that late last week the plans had changed from having an in-person open house, due to the increase of cases in Crook County and around the state.
"We really wanted to, but especially with the spike in COVID-19 cases, we want to make sure and keep the community safe. It seemed the wisest thing to do at this point," Jackson said.
Presented by St. Charles Foundation, this year's "Country Christmas" themed event will feature a silent auction and raffles. The auction will be live streamed on Saturday, Dec. 5 at 6:30 p.m. From the comfort of their own homes, participants can watch a webcast of the beautiful trees and quilts, and then bid online. Funds raised will provide crucial support services for St. Charles Hospice patients and their families.
"The need for hospice services for people in our community continues during this coronavirus pandemic," said Jackson. "We look forward to the day when we can all gather together for the traditional version of this event, but we're encouraged by the positive response and pledged support we've received from sponsors, volunteers and donors."
People are encouraged to register online prior to the event, and all registrants will be automatically entered into drawings for prizes.
As the philanthropic arm of St. Charles Health System, the foundation works to support and improve health care in Central and Eastern Oregon. Private donations raised by the foundation allow St. Charles to build new medical facilities, purchase state-of-the-art medical equipment, keep pace with the latest technological advances and deliver patient care in a healing environment. The foundation does more than just raise money for bricks and mortar. The organization also raises money to support many programs that benefit low-income and uninsured patients.
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