Program brings gifts to seniors this holiday season


The holiday season is also the season of giving and a time to share smiles with those around you. As you gather to drink hot cocoa and sing carols with family and friends, it’s important to remember there are seniors in your community who would love to celebrate, too.

However, some seniors live alone, without someone to share this special time.

Home Instead Senior Care is offering the community a chance to spread joy to local seniors. Through the Be a Santa to a Senior program, community members can give a senior a special holiday gift.

Since the program’s inception in 2003, Be a Santa to a Senior has mobilized more than 60,000 volunteers, provided about 2.1 million gifts and brightened the season for more than 700,000 deserving seniors nationwide.

“The Be a Santa to a Senior program is all about including seniors in the joy of the holiday season,” said Marty Despain, local Home Instead Senior Care owner. “A simple gift shows them they are a loved and cherished member of our community.”

The program receives support from local businesses, nonprofit organizations, retailers, numerous volunteers and members of the community. The local Home Instead Senior Care offices have partnered with several area senior care communities and nursing homes, nonprofit organizations and businesses to help with gift collection and distribution.

To help, visit one of the participating locations and look for the Be a Santa to a Senior tree on display. Trees will be on display at various locations throughout the area until Dec. 27.

Each tree will be decorated with ornaments featuring seniors’ first names and gift suggestions. Holiday shoppers can choose an ornament, buy the requested gift and return it to the store with the ornament attached.

There’s no need to worry about wrapping — community volunteers and program partners will wrap and deliver the gifts to local seniors in time for the holidays.

“While it may seem like a small act of kindness, it can really make a difference for someone this holiday season,” Mr. Despain said. “Watching seniors open the gifts they received through Be a Santa to a Senior and seeing the smiles and appreciation on their faces is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season.”

For more information about the program or to find a Be a Santa to a Senior tree near you, visit or call your local Home Instead office.

For more information about how you can help seniors in your community, visit

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Editor's Note: Information from Home Instead Senior Care.