Light Up a Life remembrance event

Attendees place lights on the display for loved ones they have lost.

Isabella Grieff

Since 1992, Light Up a Life has been organized by hospices all around the world. It raises hundreds of thousands of dollars every year to fund higher quality hospice care for those seeking comfort in their final days.

Several years ago, Cayman’s first Light Up a Life was held at Governors Square, but it has since moved to Camana Bay. Dozens of people came together that first time to celebrate and commemorate the loved ones they had lost and all the money went to Cayman HospiceCare.

Light Up a life is celebrated differently around the world, but the way it is celebrated in Cayman is you sponsor a light in the name of someone special to you who has passed on. That light is then placed on a tree and stays there for the holiday season. This is meant to help bring closure to those who have lost someone recently and to give an opportunity to others to remember someone who passed a long time ago. Different hospices run the event in different ways. Often, it is combined with a religious aspect and held as a special service, while many have performances from local musicians and actors.

This year, the event will be held at Cassia Court, Camana Bay on Nov. 29, from 5:30 p.m. The Cayman National Choir will be performing some pieces to build the atmosphere of the evening. There will also be a moment of silence and a special blessing. It comes at the perfect time for the unveiling of the new HospiceCare branding, announced this Friday. Cayman HospiceCare has been officially renamed Jasmine. The name Jasmine was chosen for its positive association with restful well-being.

Light Up a Life draws in around 150 to 200 people a year. It is a serene, therapeutic experience which allows those attending to properly mourn and remember family and friends who are no longer with them. This is considered especially important around the holiday season, when emotions are running high and loved ones are so central to the festivities.

Jasmine is asking a minimum donation of $10 for a light. It will also be selling memorial keepsakes for $12 each, which you can take home and put on your own tree. Instead of a shop window, this year the tree will shine brightly from the Crighton home on Shamrock Road. It will stay alight for the duration of the holiday season to symbolize the memories and lives that are being celebrated.

All money will go toward Jasmine but, ultimately, according to the organizers, it is not a fundraiser. Light Up a Life is about giving people an opportunity to remember their loved ones who have passed on and to find some comfort in being surrounded by others doing the same.

Register for Light Up a Life at www.caymanhospicecare.ky under Upcoming Events.

The Cayman National Choir will be performing at the event.