Around 40% of those who live in nursing homes experience loneliness.
Many of us have found ourselves in a unique situation this summer. The warmer months of the year are typically when we get out and get active, but the pandemic is keeping many of us indoors. If you are looking for something to do, you may want to consider becoming a penpal for an older person or someone with special needs.
According to some studies, around 40% of those who live in nursing homes experience loneliness. Now that social distancing is a reality, the numbers are probably higher. Since those who live in senior care facilities and nursing homes are unable to see outside guests, it has become a real problem.
One group of retirement communities, Victorian Senior Care in North Carolina, is trying to change that reality. They are using Facebook to reach out to people around the world asking that those seniors are adopted as penpals by others.
“We hate that we are not able to have our normal visitors due to COVID-19 restrictions,” Victorian Senior Care posted on Facebook. “So we … would like to pass the time by writing our pen pals!”
Regular updates of pictures and descriptions have been posted by Victorian Senior Care and now they are asking for people to send mail. As an example, the following post shows some of the residents at Phoenix Assisted Care in Cary, North Carolina. There are also links included for other locations.
*UPDATED*More Pen Pals Wanted!!We have more sweet residents at Phoenix Assisted Care wanting a friend to write to….
The residents are looking for people who have similar interests to their own. It really could be any type of interest, from sports to the type of foods they enjoy eating. The cards that the residents are holding in the Facebook pictures tell a little about what they enjoy about life.
Dozens of cards and letters as well as small gifts have already been sent to these individuals.
“First of all, we want to thank everyone that has been involved in our #VSCPenPals,” Victorian Senior Care posted. “We are overwhelmed with the outpouring of love and support not just from our own state or country but from all around the world! Our residents are truly the reason we do what we do and seeing the excitement and smiles on their faces make our day.”
We may be stuck inside and unable to have visitors at this time but our Pen Pals are keeping us busy and brightening our days!
Posted by Victorian Senior Care on Tuesday, June 30, 2020
There are many other videos of Victorian Senior Care residents talking about the program. Linda is one of the residents that is shown in another video.
“Ms. Linda would like to say thank you for all of her letters,” Victorian Senior Care posted. “She was so happy to hear from her new pen pals!”
Ms.Linda would like to say thank you for all of her letters! She was so happy to hear from her new pen pals! #VSCPenPals
Posted by Victorian Senior Care on Monday, June 29, 2020
For those who are interested in becoming penpals, the organization is asking that you choose one or more of the residents to send a letter. You can find the addresses on Facebook or you can send a letter to the main office at the company and they will match it with one of their residents.
Victorian Senior Care
4270 Heath Dairy Road
Randleman, NC 27317
It may take a while before you get a reply but they are working with the residents to make sure that they get back to their new penpals.SKM: below-content placeholder