It can be the loneliest time of the year for seniors. “Holidays are a time about giving. These people gave their whole live and now maybe their family has passed away or lives across the country. They just don't get to see them. They might be in an assisted living, or nursing home, or even in their own home, and they spend the whole holiday by themselves.” Todd Sensenbach of Home Instead Senior Care started a program called "Be A Santa to a Senior.” If you know of a senior who will be lonely for the holidays, Sensenbach wants to know about them. The names are placed on various gift trees located throughout the community. You can take a name off the tree and buy a gift for the senior. Home Instead will make sure the gift is delivered. You can find more information at: www.beaSantatoasSenior.com.
Also, Sensenbach says the holidays should be the happiest time of the year, but for many in Central Oregon including seniors, it could be the loneliest time of the year. “They may be depressed. Things that you can watch for are changes in weight, changes in mood, changes in appetite.” Sensenbach says often families have moved away or have died and these seniors have no one with which to visit. He adds that often these seniors could be helped tremendously by a single visit or even a phone call. Small tokens that you have not forgotten them, such as a card or letter can mean a lot to a lonely senior.