Teen Delivers Puzzles And Handwritten Notes To Uplift Lonely Seniors
May 11, 2020
A Pennsylvania teenager has been dropping off puzzles and handwritten letters at nursing homes to cheer up residents.
Hita Gupta says she was heartbroken upon learning her regular visits to nursing homes were put on hold because of Coronavirus.
Gupta, 15, had been volunteering at a nursing home near her home in Paoli for more than a year. She organized activities like trivia and bingo for the residents.
Due to coronavirus, the nursing home is refusing visitors in an effort to keep residents safe.
"The seniors aren't able to see their families, so that's causing loneliness, boredom and anxiety," she said.
So, she came up with the idea to deliver care packages to all of the nursing homes in her area stuffed with puzzles, coloring books, and handwritten notes.
Many of the encouraging notes are written by her 9-year-old brother, Divit.
"My brother helps me a lot. It's a lot of work," she said.
She has now sent packages to 23 nursing homes in the Philadelphia area.
Hita says she calls nursing homes ahead of time to confirm that the bags can be received safely.
"I call them and say I'm going to leave the boxes outside the front door. They usually leave it out for a few days to make sure there aren't any germs before passing it out to the residents," she said.
Hita says she will continue doing this until the public health crisis is over.
"Loneliness is now a bigger problem than ever with our pandemic and social distancing guidelines. We need to let nursing home residents know that they are not being forgotten, and that they are not alone. As a community, we need to work together to make seniors feel loved and valued."
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