It all started when Laurie Breedon and Cindy Gresham of Southlake Regional Health Centre asked the classic question: “What do you want for Christmas?”
On the list of personal items that would make Christmas brighter for residents of long-term care centres: socks.
Brand-new socks. Warm and cosy socks. Diabetic-friendly socks. Socks that fit.
"The kids get so much at Christmas," Breedon said, "we thought it would be nice to do something for the seniors."
The result was the campaign Socks for Seniors, and organizers hope to collect 500 pairs of socks, one for every resident at Bradford Valley Care Community and Southlake Residential Care Village in Newmarket.
If they are able to exceed their goal, Breedon, a Bradford resident, said they will distribute the socks to other local long-term care residences.
"They don't have to be fancy, even the dollar stores have nice cosy socks at a reasonable price," she said.
"You can buy a pair of socks instead of that third cup of coffee at Tim Horton's," Breedon added with a laugh.
Breedon and Gresham reached out to the communities, and a number of local organizations have stepped up. In Bradford, the BWG Minor Hockey Association Bulldogs, Bradford Curling Club, and South Simcoe police are all now involved in collecting socks for seniors.
In Newmarket, socks can be dropped off at Southlake Village at 640 Grace St.
“It’s so much more than just socks,” explained Lisa Lloyd, volunteer co-ordinator with Sienna Senior Living, which operates Bradford Valley. “It’s connecting members of the community with our residents that live in the home. Receiving a gift will brighten their day, make them feel special, and hopefully they realize others are thinking of them.”
“The socks,” said Lloyd, “will keep their feet warm and goes with our slogan, ‘The Warmth of Human Connection.’”
— with files from Debora Kelly