Helping seniors in during holiday season with ‘Be a Santa to a Senior’ gift drive – 13abc Action News

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) – The holiday season is upon us and when you head out to the stores or make your online purchases, you can help a senior in need in our community.

The 18th Annual “Be a Santa to a Senior,” program is a gift drive for seniors who are in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and day centers around the area.

Anyone who wants to participate can grab a tag off of a tree at NOMS CPW, Walmart in Forestview, or the offices at Home Instead. You can also visit the album online and claim “Santa” on a tag. Then you go out, shop for that item, and return the gifts — preferably unwrapped — to the location and the folks at Home Instead drop the gifts off the week of Christmas.

Lauren McPherson, the service coordinator at Home Instead, said most gift requests in the past were blankets and clothes, but since the pandemic, many seniors are requesting more arts and crafts, cards, games, picture frames, and other items to give them more activities to do because they’re spending more time alone.

“I think it’s important to do this because it makes the seniors feel like they’re not forgotten or left out this season. To me, that’s the importance. They’ve lived here and given their whole lives to Toledo, and now Toledo and the surrounding areas are giving back to them,” McPherson said.

The deadline to drop off your gifts is December 15. If you’re interested, stop at one of the locations below.

“We get a lot of people who are just surprised. Even if they’ve been in the program in years past, they’re surprised. We get a lot of people who didn’t expect anything, just a phone call from their family far away, so they’re surprised and just a lot of gratitude, so much gratitude,” McPherson said.

“Be a Santa to a Senior” trees can be found at the following locations:
  • Walmart – 5821 Central Ave., Toledo
  • Forestview Lanes – 2345 W Dean Rd., Temperance, Mich.
  • NOMS CPW – 3130 Central Park West, Toledo

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