1,000 paper cranes folded for health-care workers in Richmond, B.C.

·2 min read
1,000 paper cranes folded for health-care workers in Richmond, B.C.

Volunteers with the Steveston Buddhist Temple have folded 1,000 paper cranes, a symbol of hope and recovery, to help lift the spirits of health-care workers as the pandemic pushes past the anniversary of the first COVID-19 case in B.C.

Keiko Go, an administrator with the temple, and other volunteers have been folding the cranes for weeks and placing them on bamboo sticks.

"Just to give hope and a message that we do appreciate what they do day and night," she said about health-care workers. "We're all in this together."

Doug Kerr/CBC
Doug Kerr/CBC

Go says along with the symbolism of the cranes, the bamboo sticks represent inner peace and strength.

"It's positive thinking … the whole thing," she said. "Each crane has ... love in it."

The temple hopes to deliver the cranes to workers at Richmond Hospital once it is safe to do so. Go said the hospital can't accept them now due to pandemic safety precautions.

She said the hospital will share images of the cranes with workers.

It's been more than a year since B.C. confirmed its first case of COVID-19 and since then people in the province have coped with ups and downs as infections and outbreaks ebbed and flowed.

For the past three months, provincial restrictions have limited social gatherings to household members only. Those restrictions were extended indefinitely on Friday as the province watches to see how new variants of the coronavirus affects the trajectory of the pandemic in B.C.

Go said the crane project was to help inspire people to keep going despite a bleak winter.

"I'm sure we will overcome this with our strong Canadian spirit," she said.

Doug Kerr/CBC
Doug Kerr/CBC

Dr. Cala Fry, a registered psychologist and director of the Vancouver Psychology Centre, said things like the crane project at the Steveston temple can help bolster people's well-being.

"From a mental health perspective we know that giving kindness to others improves our mood, whether it's acts, whether it's deeds, whether it's words, small things make a difference," she said.