25th Annual Compass Group Canada Festival of Trees Raises $365K for Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia

November 28, 2016

Halifax, NS –  History was made and records were shattered at the 25th anniversary of the Compass Group Canada Festival of Trees.  Excitement was building throughout the night as one of the featured trees up for auction reached a record-breaking bid of $30,000; a combined effort of anonymous bidders and guests attending the festival.  The tree was donated to Kristin Otto who then donated it to the IWK.  This “Key Moments” tree was designed by Beatrice Pelley & Kristen Otto. 

Back in 2013, Bea Pelley’s “Dragonfly Tree” broke all the records by raising $21,000 when two competing bidders came together to make a little girl’s Christmas brighter. The tree was delivered to Kristen Otto and her family. Its theme is based on the story of the dragonfly, which helps children deal with the loss of a loved one. This year, Kristen helped decorate this beautiful Legacy Tree in memory of her mother.

The World Trade and Convention Centre hosted over 650 guests for Friday’s Luncheon, and nearly 700 for Saturday evening’s Gala.   Upon their arrival, guests walked down the dazzling silver carpet that led them into a shining and sparkly winter wonderland.

Shannex has been the Luncheon Sponsor for eight years, delighting guests with their first taste of the holiday season. Each year, Shannex partners with clients of Kings Regional Rehabilitation Centre to create ornaments for guests. The 2016 ornament was a sparkling snowflake with glittering silver to reflect the Foundation’s silver anniversary celebration.    

Guests were truly dazzled at Luncheon this year, bidding on 25 cakes and 25 wreaths to raise over $6,500 from these two auctions alone. The 12 Days of Christmas Raffle was another crowd favourite, featuring 12 unique prizes for lucky winners – the top prize was $2,500 donated by Bell Aliant.

This year was RBC’s second year sponsoring the Black Tie Gala event and it was another great success. Reeny Smith, a 23 year-old emerging artist from North Preston, performed “O Holy Night” to kick off the event and the event closed out with a dance and live music from The Mellotones.

Gala featured a silent auction, live auction, and three big-ticket raffles: Santa Steele, for a two year lease on a 2016 Audi Q3; Touch of Gold, for a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust II; and Christmas Cash, for $5,000 cash donated by Tim and Bernie Moore. The raffles raised over $32,000.The Nova Centre and EllisDon Forest of Trees was a sparkling backdrop for both events, featuring 24 corporate and individual contributions.

The Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia would like to extend gratitude to its Festival Event Sponsors: Compass Group Canada, Shannex, and RBC; Forest of Trees Sponsor: Nova Centre and EllisDon; Media Sponsor: CTV; Branding Sponsor, Revolve; and Technology Sponsors: St. John Ambulance and STI . A full list of sponsors and partners can be found online at mentalhealthns.ca.

Funds raised at the Festival of Trees support mental health programs and services across Nova Scotia.

About the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia

The Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia is a registered charity dedicated to improving the lives of Nova Scotians living with mental illness and their loved ones, and increasing access to mental health education and awareness for all Nova Scotians. We raise funds for vital programs and services that help make this possible, province-wide. 


Media Contact:

Jennifer Lewandowski, Communications Lead
Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia
T: (902) 464-3210
E: Jennifer.Lewandowski@nshealth.ca
Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia
Suite 1120, 300 Pleasant Street
Dartmouth, NS   B2Y 3Z9