Santa for Seniors returns for 2023

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For the fourth straight year, Santa is looking to slide down the chimney and spread some joy to local seniors.

Santa for Seniors, a local organization powered by volunteers, encourages everyone to write cards and send gifts to Chatham-Kent seniors.

Our seniors population can too often feel isolated, the more so if pandemic restrictions were to return in the winter.

Many of Chatham-Kent’s seniors will be spending the holidays lonely and isolated.

But not if Santa for Seniors can help it. The group seeks to connect with every senior in Chatham-Kent in a unique way.

Santa for Seniors is a project that was inspired by many other food and gift drives that took place in Chatham-Kent because of covid.

“These past few years have been particularly challenging for so many people in our community, and there have been lots of great ways to help with these challenges. Isolation is another challenge, especially for seniors, and we hope to brighten their day with some gifts and cards from every corner of Chatham-Kent,” co-organizer Dava Robichaud said in a media release.

Robichaud is encouraging individuals and families to write holiday cards and pack gifts once again for seniors. Everything is delivered the week before Christmas.

“Let’s come together again as a community to send out as many cards and gifts to our senior population as we can. If you’d like to contribute, spend some time this weekend with your family and have some fun writing cards and putting together gift boxes,” Robichaud said.

“In 2020, the community came together to provide over 5,800 greeting cards and a little over 800 gifts for local seniors. The following two years, we collected over 3,150 gifts, and 3,500 greeting cards,” co-organizer Emmalee Longbottom said.

Some items that can go in the boxes are: toiletries, cookies, tea, puzzles, hats, gloves, stationery, and other small gifts.

If you don’t have an empty box, you can pick one up at the TekSavvy Security Kiosk at 800 Richmond St. in Chatham.

“Boxes can be returned unwrapped, and our team of volunteer elves will take care of the rest,” Longbottom said.

Organizers and volunteers will be sanitizing all gifts before boxes are wrapped. Boxes and cards will be safely distributed to all retirement and nursing homes, and cards will be included in all Meals on Wheels deliveries in Chatham-Kent.

Boxes and cards will be accepted until Dec. 15.


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