For 2 decades, the BC florist has been bringing joy to end-of-life patients with a free bouquet every week

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For the elderly residents of the North Okanagan Hospice Society in Vernon, British Columbia, every Monday is a good day.

For the past two decades, Vernon Flower Shop owner Jake Spoor has delivered free fresh bouquets each week to dying seniors.

“It’s a great idea, you know, to cheer someone up for a while,” Spoor, 81, told CBC host Chris Walker. South Dawn.

Spoor and his parents, who were also florists, came to Canada from the Netherlands in 1951.

In 1977, after years of back pain from operating local orchards, he says he decided to buy a flower shop, in part to fulfill his parents’ dream of running a flower business in Canada.

Spoor says he had a conversation in early 2001 with his staff about giving back to the community.

“We felt that we should give flowers to an organization,” he said. “Looking around for potential candidates,” he says, “one of his staff said, ‘Why don’t we do the palliative care society? “”

Jake Spoor says the idea of ​​sending flowers to the hospice stemmed from a desire to give back to the community. (Submitted by Jake Spoor)

Founded in 1984, the North Okanagan Hospice Society provides end-of-life patients with pain and symptom management and a break from caregiving for families.

Support services manager Tanya Stilborn, who has worked with the hospice for six years, says she first heard about Spoor from its executive director and believes that over the years her clients have received from Spoor more than 13,000 bespoke flower arrangements. made according to their gender with a label that says “to brighten your day”.

Stilborn says these gifts meant a lot to hospice residents in their last weeks of life.

“Those little bright spots in their day are really something to focus on,” she said. “There’s a lot of joy that lights up their faces when they see…this beautiful little arrangement every Monday.”

“It’s uplifting and it’s thoughtful.”

Spoor says he doesn’t mind the cost and intends to continue providing the service for as long as he can.

“Well, we can’t stop that. The staff would be really annoyed if I ever said to ever stop doing that.”

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