VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -
During Christmas, most of the focus is on children. On Friday, Be a Santa to a Senior delivered more than 300 gifts to seniors in the Valdosta area.
This nation-wide program is run through Home Instead Senior Care. They receive the names of individuals in need from local agencies and nursing homes.
The presents were piled high at today's gift delivery at downtown Valdosta's Ashley House. "I just can't quit smiling about it because it just brings such happiness to them," said Dianne Yeomans, Service Coordinator at the Ashley House.
The names of participating seniors are written on ornaments, along with a short list of items they'd like to have. Those ornaments are hung on trees at participating local retailers.
"We had 315 names this year that qualified. We're not going to have to buy a single gift. So, the public has responded," said Jack Hartley. Jack is the franchise ownder of Home Instead Senior Care of Valdosta.
For many seniors, these gifts will be the only ones they receive this holiday season. To them, the donations are priceless.
Brenda Mull, a resident at Ashley House, told us that she was thrilled with the alarm clock and pajamas someone bought her. She said, "The clock is perfect. It projects the time onto the ceiling so I won't have to get out of bed to check it. I will be able to sleep better." The gifts serve as a reminder that, even in these tough economic times, someone still wants to help. Hartley explained, "(People) know that giving is better than receiving, and there's a blessing in that.