Published November 16, 2017
Many area seniors may feel lonely or forgotten this holiday season, it’s also important to remember that as well as feeling isolated, elderly people also have physical/medical issues to deal with – seniors tend to face high dental costs and even if you qualify for Medicaid, only 17 out of 50 states cover dental procedures. Experts recommend to look into dental discount plans as early as possible and sign up with a provider that suits your needs. Hopefully resolving medical issues like this could make them feel more at ease too. Additionally, for this reason, the Ford County Volunteer Center is requesting donations to the Silver Tree program. The program collects small gifts, necessities, and other NEW, unwrapped items to deliver to seniors to bring them some holiday cheer. Examples of donations requested include: hats or gloves, flashlights, scarves, pajamas, slippers, blankets, puzzles, sugar-free candy, word searches, crossword puzzle books, and handcrafted items. In addition to material goods, a donation of time, such as spending time working on a puzzle with a senior or taking a senior out for ice cream, would be very much appreciated.
“RSVP became involved as it is a cause that is dear to our hearts, local seniors, especially lonely ones at Christmas,” said Debbie Allen, Director of the Ford County Volunteer Center. “For a couple of years, we had a business that purchased poinsettia plants and we delivered those around town but when that stopped, we were looking to find another way and that’s when Silver Tree came on the scene. A call was made to see how RSVP could help. Cathy [Cox] and Andrea [Hogue] allowed us to join their effort. The project has grown, so we now use a space in the Mall, instead of their basement to collect, sort & wrap donations and it is the central point to load up Santa’s sled and deliver! It is so heartwarming to see all those smiling faces, even a few tears from surprised, appreciative seniors.”
Seniors selected for the Silver Tree program are participants in the Meals on Wheels program, SWKAAA, and area senior living facilities, as well as those recommended by a friend or family member. If you would like to recommend a senior to benefit from the Silver Tree program or for more information, please call Andrea Hogue at 620-253-2806, Cathy Cox at 316-250-0035, or Debbie Allen at 620-255-1158.
Donations are being accepted from now until December 20th at the RSVP office in the lower level of the Village Square Mall or the Admissions office at Western Plains Regional Hospital. If you have any items that need to be picked up for donation, please contact Andrea Hogue at the above telephone number by December 20th.