Organ recipient Francine Timbers, (from left to right) OR nurse Melissa Nord, organ recipient Matt Scaife and Larry Zutz with transplant team carry boxes of popcorn at KGH for the annual Operation Popcorn event, Dec. 5. - Carli Berry/Capital News

Popcorn the symbol of thanks at Kelowna General Hospital

The annual Operation Popcorn was held Dec. 5 to give thanks to medical staff for saving lives

Operation Popcorn is celebrating another successful year.

For the last 26 years, organ recipients and the B.C. Transplant Society give doctors, nurses and other staff members across B.C. popcorn in order to say thank you for their work in helping to save lives.

Matt Scaife has participated in the event for the last 17 years. After receiving a new liver in 2000, he is now on the waitlist for another due to his auto-immune disease.

He said Operation Popcorn allows the nurses and staff to see the results of their work, something they don’t often get to experience.

Marilyn Byfield is the captain of this year’s Okanagan transplant support group and is also a volunteer with B.C. Transplant. She had a liver transplant five years ago.

RELATED: Organ recipients say thank you at KGH

Whether it’s the ER, OR, or ICU, every division of staffer that plays a role in the transplant procedure gets a box of popcorn, courtesy of Rocky Mountain Chocolates.

There are about 100 boxes that have been donated across the province, Byfield said.

She said she isn’t sure why popcorn is the symbol of choice.

“It’s giving back and thanking the people that kept us going pre-transplant or afterwards. All transplants are done at VGH, but if you live in Kelowna, you need a lot of things to happen before you get to Vancouver to have a transplant. The Kelowna nursing staff here and other parts of the hospital have looked after our patients so we know each other quite well,” Byfield said.

“Most of the people here have been in and out of the hospital a number of times before they got their transplants.”

RELATED: Saying thanks for a new lease on life

In B.C. in 2016, 651 British Columbians were on the waiting list for organ donations and 21 died while waiting. A total of 423 transplants were performed. Ninety-five per cent of British Columbians say they support organ donation, but only 20 per cent, just more than 1 million people, have registered to be organ donors. For more information about organ donation contact transplant.bc.ca.

@carliberry_
carli.berry@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Only steps away: Gutsy Walk returns to Kelowna

The walk to cures for Crohn’s disease and colitis comes June 2

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of Victoria Day

How much do you know about the monarch whose day we celebrate each May?

Kelowna firefighters douse blaze in hedges

The cause of the fire on Renfrew Road is under investigation.

Kayaker still missing as COSAR continues aerial searches

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

Kelowna Springtime Regatta draws more than 50 sailboats

Sailors treated to windy, excellent long weekend conditions on Okanagan Lake

Weather holds up for Rutland May Days

60th annual May Day midway, market and entertainment saw hundreds of attendees

Update: Plan to see more smoke from South Okanagan wildfire

Richter Creek wildfire, 12 kilometres west of Osoyoos, is an estimated 400 hectares

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

South Okanagan runners take top spots in Peach City RunFest

Both the top male and female half-marathon winners were from Penticton

Former Greyhound Canada employees gather in Okanagan to say a final farewell

“Greyhound may take our jobs but they will never take our friendships,” says former bus driver

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

B.C. VIEWS: Reality of our plastic recycling routine exposed

Turns out dear old China wasn’t doing such a great job

Okanagan tattoo fundraiser draws tons of support

Lineup around the block in Vernon for start of Five Fathoms Tattoo event for Children’s Hospital

Carbon dioxide at highest levels for over 2.5 million years, expert warns of 100 years of disruption

CO2 levels rising rapidly, now higher than at any point in humanity’s history

Most Read