Launched in November, Home Instead’s Santa-gram campaign reached out to primary schools across Calderdale to ask school children to create a special Christmas card or letter for an elderly person this Christmas. Most of our elderly population have experienced isolation and loneliness this year due to COVID-19, with many continuing to isolate over the Christmas period.
The home care company, which provides companionship, housekeeping and personal care to people in their own homes was overwhelmed by the result.
They had seventeen schools and one after school club sign up to the campaign, receiving 1452 Christmas cards which were all decorated, or hand drawn by children from ages four to 11.
They also received a further 389 items including bookmarks, letters, pictures, decorations and riddles, to be distributed along with their cards.
The Santa-grams were packed into envelopes and delivered along with the presents to assisted living facilities, churches and community groups including Memory Lane and
Riverside Dementia Cafés, Age UK, Halifax Blind Society, the Royal British Legion and Making Space – the carer’s wellbeing service.
The company also teamed up with local pharmacies who helped to distribute the Santa-grams to their network of customers that receive home delivery of their medication.
A resident phoned in after receiving her Santa-gram to say: “Thank you for our lovely Christmas surprise. It was so kind of you to take the time making them for us. I am sending you a photo of your decorations in house they are lovely.”
“Lovely Christmas card delivered by my local pharmacy. It was beautiful and really made my day.”
Munaf Patel, Director at Home Instead Calderdale said: “Since the reopening from lockdown in July, many of the community groups which serve the elderly have still not restarted their meetings and as result a lot of older people are missing out on the companionship, care and love that many of us simply take for granted. We wanted to do something to help out and this is a nice way to bring two different generations together.”