Dianna Patton, Fiona Vandenberg and Erica Eriks wrap Christmas presents for Home Instead’s Be a Santa for a Senior program. (Aaron Hinks photo)

Lonely South Surrey-White Rock seniors to receive gifts from community

Home Instead organizes 10th annual Be a Santa for a Senior program

Semiahmoo Peninsula seniors who would otherwise be spending the holidays alone are to receive a gift of compassion from residents of the community.

The Be a Santa to a Senior program – now in its 10th year and organized by Home Instead Senior Care – connects isolated or low-income seniors with presents purchased by members of the community.

Leading up to Christmas, the seniors created a wish list, which was attached to Christmas trees located in businesses in Surrey, White Rock and Langley. Generous residents picked a wish list off the tree and returned with a present.

The Seniors Come Share Society recommended a list of seniors for the program, who remain anonymous, apart from their first name. This year, 57 seniors enrolled in the program.

“Some of the wishes, it would break your heart,” Home Instead representative Laurie McPherson said. “You know, we have a fellow this year, he asked for bars of soap and Kleenex, and that was his wish list. It really breaks your heart.”

McPherson said the group contributed a little extra to that senior’s particular gift, including soap, Kleenex, chocolates, Christmas cookies and blankets.

“His box is full,” she said.

Once the presents are prepared, Home Instead volunteers deliver the gifts to the seniors.

“I’ve done it in the past, it’s just amazing. People are so happy and a lot of times, more than the gifts, they love to have someone come in and have a little visit with them,” McPherson said.

Although Home Instead provides non-medical care to seniors, including helping them stay independent and live in their own home, the Be a Santa to Senior participants are not clients of the organization, McPherson said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Last chance to nominate for Community Leader Awards in Surrey

Annual awards event will be held online Nov. 23

Surrey FC’s arrival in BC Premier League brings high-performance soccer to Newton

The 12-member BCSPL also includes Surrey United, based at Cloverdale Athletic Park

North Surrey Secondary school reports COVID-19 exposure

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

B.C. counts 125 new COVID-19 cases, up to 1,284 active

No new deaths or health care facility outbreaks

Man pleads guilty to violent assault of elderly man in Abbotsford

Victim, 85, attacked while waiting at bus stop in November 2019

Lessons from a pandemic: How to design a nursing home that’s safe and love-filled

A look at how one care home is battling the pandemic with the social needs of the elderly in their care

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Winter tires, chains now mandatory along most B.C. highways

Drivers without the proper winter tires – which must also be in good condition – can be fined $109

Staff shortages plague Mission Institution following recovery from COVID-19 outbreak

Guards at 60% of workforce; inmates suffer daily with lockdown, mental health issues

Health Canada green-lights rapid COVID-19 test

Health Canada approved the BCube test from Hyris Ltd. in the United Kingdom Sept. 23

First Nations Health Authority chief medical officer concerned with rising COVID-19 cases

“There’s still so much we don’t know and we’re learning everyday about this particular virus.”

Most Read