Santa for Seniors brightens holiday season for older adults

The Oswego County Office for the Aging collected gifts and other items for seniors in the community over the past month as part of the Santa for Seniors program. Pictured are Office for the Aging Director Sara Sunday, right, and NY Connects Coordinator Elizabeth Weimer with just a small portion of the items delivered to Oswego County seniors this month ahead of the Christmas holiday.

OSWEGO COUNTY - More than 70 seniors in Oswego County are opening gifts this holiday season thanks to the Office for the Aging’s Santa for Seniors program.

Staff from the Oswego County Office for the Aging (OFA) began delivering packages to nearly 100 older adults who may feel isolated during the holiday season. Deliveries will continue, with 72 seniors adopted as part of the program, in addition to 25 seniors receiving nonperishable food collections from OFA through a partnership with Catholic Charities and Fulton Rotary.

“We are so happy this program can bring a smile to elders’ faces,” said OFA Director Sara Sunday. “For many, these are the only gifts they will receive. The joy and thankfulness of participants truly reminds us of the reason why we do what we do.”

The Santa for Seniors program was organized by OFA and NY Connects of Oswego County with an aim to make the holiday season a little brighter for older adults in the community who may lack the support of family and have limited financial resources, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Additional donations from Women in Nuclear (Exelon) included gift bags containing mugs, hot cocoa, winter socks, puzzles and other activities, along with electric blankets and knitted winter hats for 67 seniors.

“It has been an amazing collaboration and truly what the season is all about,” said NY Connects and Caregiver Services Coordinator Elizabeth Weimer. “The community response was amazing.”

Nominations for the Santa for Seniors program were solicited from the community earlier this year, and nominators included individuals’ interests and hobbies, personality traits, clothing sizes, suggested or needed gift items and other information.

Families and organizations were able to “adopt” or provide gifts for seniors through OFA, which is arranging the delivery of the items.

For more information about the Office for the Aging and programming for seniors, call 315-349-3484 or email ofa@oswegocounty.com.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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