For the elderly, those with injury, illness or disability, Christmas can heighten their sense of loneliness. Some may not get any visitors and may not be able to shop for their Christmas presents, go carol singing or decorate the tree because of their situation.
So why not bring Christmas to them? One sunny morning Veronica Manion, Geneva Healthcare Chief Executive, armed with her two puppies, put on her reindeer ears and delivered gifts to Geneva Community Living Houses for persons with disabilities. The gift packs included baking tools and a cookie recipe for the residents to bake together and bond over creating tasty Christmas treats of their own.
“In the end my puppies might have upstaged the actual gifts! Delivering Christmas presents is something I like to do in person. Christmas can become a lonely and unhappy time for many people. Our Clients in the Community Living Houses have disabilities and are not immune to Christmas loneliness,” says Veronica Manion.
"Each Christmas, Geneva Staff, myself included, deliver Christmas gifts to our Community Living Clients, and we all sit down for a chat and a cuppa. The presents aside, it’s often just the chat and laughs that our Clients are looking for, particularly around Christmas time. Fighting Christmas loneliness in our communities can be as easy as popping around to your neighbours with a simple gift,” she concludes.