On Remembrance Day the grounds of Sunnybrook Veterans Centre will be transformed into a sea of red and white to pay tribute to Canada’s veterans.
Through Operation Raise a Flag, an annual Remembrance Day campaign, 37,500 Canadian flags will be planted throughout the grounds of the veterans’ facility, according to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.
The Sunnybrook Veterans Centre is the largest veterans’ care facility in Canada, states their website. The facility works in close partnership with Veterans Affairs Canada, and offers long-term and complex hospital care to veterans from the Second World War and Korean War.
The placing of the flags is usually done by community volunteers, but will be carried out by Sunnybrook staff and members of the Canadian Armed Forces this year due to COVID-19 safety restrictions.
The annual event allows for Sunnybrook’s 375 veterans to wake up on November 11 to a spectacle in their honour, knowing their sacrifice has not been forgotten.
“Operation Raise a Flag has become a wonderful tradition and takes on even more significance this year as we need to be even more cautious with our veterans,” said Dr. Jocelyn Charles, Medical Director of the Veterans Centre.
“With limited opportunity for public Remembrance Day ceremonies, this special campaign is a wonderful way for Canadians to pay tribute to our veterans and honour their service and sacrifices.”
Canadians can support Operation Raise a Flag and the Sunnybrook Veterans Centre virtually by making a donation and including a personal note of thanks to the facility’s veterans, according to organizers.
Proceeds from the campaign will help to improve Sunnybrook veterans’ quality of life through unique programming, continued learning opportunities, and innovative equipment, said the campaign’s release. Donations will also be used to improve outdoor spaces at the facility, such as the Veterans Therapeutic Garden.