Lonely older adults not forgotten by ‘Be a Santa to a Senior’

The last of the Be a Santa to a Senior gift tag ornaments were at 2nd Life Furniture & More, 6524 E. State Blvd., in Georgetown Square on Tuesday. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
A sign announces the Be a Santa to a Senior gift tag ornaments at 2nd Life Furniture & More, 6524 E. State Blvd., in Georgetown Square. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
Be a Santa to a Senior participants mostly ask for simple items, said Home Instead Senior Care General Manager Joan Black. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
Todd likes the Cowboys, according to his Be a Santa to a Senior gift tag ornament in 2nd Life Furniture & More, 6524 E. State Blvd., in Georgetown Square. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)

Just three paper ornaments remained Tuesday afternoon on the Be a Santa to a Senior tree at 2nd Life Furniture & More, 6524 E. State Blvd.

This is the 14th year that Home Instead Senior Care has been granting wishes to local seniors. Staff put out a total of 120 tags on trees at its office, 2789-B Maplecrest Road, as well as 2nd Life Furniture & More and Riegel’s Pipe & Tobacco Shop in Georgetown Square and nearby Umber’s Do-It-Best Hardware, 2814 Maplecrest Road.

Only the three ornaments were outstanding as of Tuesday.

The tags contain gift wishes from seniors, whether it’s for a hat, hand lotion or snacks.

“Some are very humble,” said Joan Black, general manager at Home Instead, a home health care provider. “Probably the biggest we’ve gotten is for a comforter or a set of sheets.”

Some of the seniors just ask for something for their dog or cat, but Home Instead has some cash and adds a little for the owner, too.

“We focus on getting names of seniors who are home alone, with little family,” Black said.

With the response to the program, Home Instead might expand the number of sites for paper ornaments next year, Black said. The three stores have participated the last four years.

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