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Getting into the holiday team spirit

Back to Our Stories

The Royal Columbian Hospital Food Services Team makes the holidays eco-friendly.

A conga line of food services staff is dancing through the hallways of the Royal Columbian Hospital (RCH) in a delightful holiday video produced by Elaine Chu, Lucy Hoang and the hospital’s Food Services Team, featuring the team’s very own professional singer Naomi Chan. On top of their scrubs, aprons, and hairnets, they’re wearing reindeer ears and multi-coloured holiday lights around their necks, and they’re moving to the beat of Elaine and Naomi’s voices.

Make your holiday eco-friendly, Fa la la la la la la la la!
T’is the season to be mindful, Fa la la la la la la la la!
Love our planet, love the people, Fa la la la la la la la la!
Let’s reduce our carbon footprints, Fa la la la la la la la la!

The lyrics, sung to the melody of the classic Christmas carol “Deck the Halls,” are meant to inspire sustainable choices during the holiday season.

I wanted to tie the theme of sustainability into our holiday celebration,”

says Elaine, who is the Regional Manager of Food Operations at Fraser Health’s Royal Columbian Hospital and Eagle Ridge Hospital, and the Chairperson of Lower Mainland Sustainable Hospital Food Operations Committee. “When we celebrate holidays, typically our priority isn’t sustainability.” Instead, the conventional focus on “doing things festively and perfectly” could result in lots of waste, including single-use decorations, gift wrappings, dishware and cutlery, and over-buying food to share.

One night in November, Elaine wrote the lyrics to “Make Your Holiday Eco-Friendly,” with a fact or a tip in each line. Then she recorded the song with Lucy Hoang, Clinical Dietitian, and Naomi Chan, professional singer and member of the RCH Food Services Team. The rest of the team joined in the fun by acting and dancing in the holiday project. For Elaine, the best part is “being silly and crazy together as we film, share laughs, bloopers, and team spirit.”

The video was premiered at the “Make Your Holidays Eco-Friendly” food services staff celebration event at RCH, organized by Elaine on December 6. To add more fun, Elaine set up a red carpet photo session for her staff before showing the video, and presented Academy Awards to all who participated in the video.

Putting her tips in action, the event featured vegetarian appetizers and guests were invited to bring their own reusable plates and utensils to help reduce waste. All of the decorations for the event were reusable for future events. Funding for the event was generously supported by the Royal Columbian Hospital Foundation.

Now you can celebrate with the RCH Food Services team and sing along!