In an effort to help seniors living in care homes dealing with feelings of isolation due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, a 21-year-old SFU student rallied her church group to do something to help.
Kayla Li, a member of the California Zion Church Canada branch, heard her grandmother express those feelings of isolation and decided she would do something about it. In an effort to help seniors feel more connected, she collaborated with members from her church and together they got to writing letters offering words of comfort to the seniors.
“In such difficult times like this, seniors are struggling with loneliness and I thought this would be the best way to connect with them,” Li said, adding that as a church, they “felt the need to show love to the community and to bridge that gap through [their] actions.”
The 'most excitement she had all week'
Many members wrote heartfelt letters of encouragement, prepared handmade bouquets for the seniors, and delivered them to the care home. Several children from the Write Choice Early Learning Centre also made their own handcrafted cards to the senior citizens. A total of 100 letters with flowers were delivered on Saturday, March 20 to the residents of Thornebridge Gardens Retirement Residence in New Westminster.
Although responsible for the seniors’ loneliness and isolation, Li said the letters were not written just in response to the current pandemic.
“Given the recent rise in hate crimes against Asians, as an Asian myself, I wanted to share some warmth towards those affected by showing goodwill to the community,” she said.
The staff and senior citizens at Thornebridge Gardens expressed words of gratitude to the group with one resident saying it "was the most excitement she had all week."