Home Instead asks community to play Santa to seniors in need


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​​​​Small gifts can brighten h​olidays to those without family

Niagara This Week - Niagara Falls​​
By Richard Hutton 

NIAGARA FALLS — Christmas is often thought of as a time for families to get together, gather around the tree, exchange gifts, and celebrate the season with a holiday meal.

But for some people, especially seniors living alone with no family, it can be a lonely time.

The local office of Home Instead Senior Care is trying to alleviate some of that sadness through its Be a Santa to a Senior program.

Home Instead’s Niagara Falls office has set up Christmas trees at Stamford Home Hardware in Niagara Falls and Boggio’s Pharmacy in Port Colborne. Each tree is festooned with tags bearing the name of a senior in need and a gift request. Anyone wishing to help need just take one of the tags, purchase the gift and return it to either Stamford Home Hardware or Boggio’s by Dec. 16.

“They’re seniors in need,” said Denielle Cuoco, owner of the Home Instead Senior Care office serving Niagara Falls. “This enables us to provide them with a little holiday spirit by doing something as small as purchasing a pair of gloves for someone in need, local residents can do something special for seniors in their community this year.”

The names of seniors in need were supplied by the Region’s community support outreach program, Cuoco said, adding that there are between 75 and 85 people looking for their personal Santa.

Cuoco was grateful that businesses like Stamford Home Hardware and Boggio’s stepped forward to help by providing space for the trees and to be drop-off points.

“It’s important that we have local retailers involved so that we have convenient locations for the public to get involved and for the exposure,” Cuoco said.

For Bert Prinzen, owner of Stamford Home Hardware, getting involved was a no-brainer.

“We wanted to do something and they (Home Instead) had a need we could fill,” he said.

A tree is also located at the Niagara Falls office for Home Instead Senior Care at 6293 Thorold Stone Rd.

Stamford Home Hardware is located at 3639 Portage Rd. in Niagara Falls while Boggio’s Pharmacy is located at 200 Catherine St., Port Colborne. Program partners and volunteers will wrap and distribute the gifts to the seniors.

For more information about the program, visit BeASantaToASenior.ca or call (289) 296-0288.
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