The BC Liquor Stores Share-a-Bear campaign has provided the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation more than 150 bears to share with patients over the holiday season. (Contributed)

The BC Liquor Stores Share-a-Bear campaign has provided the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation more than 150 bears to share with patients over the holiday season. (Contributed)

150-plus bears spotted at Vernon hospital

Share-a-Bear campaign success to deliver smiles to patients over Christmas season

It is rare to hear stories of twins separated at birth, but these bears are meant to be separated when you purchase them.

For the past 31 years, BC Liquor Stores have sold Share-a-Bears ahead of the holiday season in support of local charities.

The customer takes one bear home to gift to a loved one or keep for themselves and the other is donated to the store to be distributed to a local charity.

This year is no different. However, the bears’ outfits are.

The 2020 fuzzy bears, sold for $12.70 plus tax, are wearing matching green plaid toques and are popular with North Okanagan residents, the Vernon Jubilee Hospital said Friday, Dec. 11.

“While BC Liquor Stores employees are proud to deliver our cuddly bears to their local charities knowing they’ll bring a smile to a child’s face, ultimately it is our customers’ generosity that makes this campaign a success every year,” BCLS operations Jonathan Castaneto said. “Customers can still purchase the bears throughout the month of December at any local BC Liquor Store.”

VJH Foundation executive director Kate McBrearty said despite the unusual year, the hospital doesn’t close down.

“Regular surgeries and treatments still occur,” McBrearty said. “And unfortunately, families still need to bring their child in sometimes. Providing children of all ages with something as cute as these little bears offers a great distraction.

“The staff can’t wait to distribute them and bring smiles to young and old,” McBrearty said.

This year, the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation received more than 150 Share-a-Bears to be distributed over the holidays.

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