Bringing the joy of Christmas to our seniors

By Geoff Lee

November 15, 2016 12:00 AM

GONNA TAKE AN ORNAMENTAL JOURNEY Lloydminster & District Co-op CEO, Don Stephenson, and Monique Pretty, director of Continuing Care with Prairie North Regional Health Authority, check the 550 gift wishes from regional seniors with the relaunch of the Co-op's Spread a Little Love this Christmas campaign that runs until Dec. 2. GEOFF LEE LLS PHOTO

Seniors in our region will wake up on Christmas morning to open gifts sent from the heart.
Lloydminster & District Co-op relaunched its popular Spread a Little Love this Christmas campaign on Monday to run until Dec. 2.
Last year, the campaign provided gifts for more 500 seniors at regional residences in six communities.
“To say we were overwhelmed is probably one of the biggest understatements of our year,” said Lloydminster & District Co-op CEO Don Stephenson.
Once again the Co-op invites customers to pick up an ornament from Christmas trees at the Lloyd Co-op Marketplace or Neilburg Co-op grocery store which bares the senior’s name and Christmas wish item.
This year, there are 550 names on the wish list for seniors living in 12 residences.
“We can’t lose sight of the fact that we are going through some trying economic times and despite that people, families use that opportunity to step up and say this is what Christmas and the season truly means,” said Stephenson.
Last year all the wishes were spoken for in the first five days of the campaign.
Stephenson it’s an opportunity to give to seniors without looking for anything in return.
“This is a pretty small way for us to say thank you and to recognize the efforts that they did each and every day to give use what we have,” he said.
News of the return of the Christmas wish campaign put Monique Pretty, director of continuing care with Prairie North Regional Health Authority in an early festive mood.
“There has been such positive feedback from last’s year’s campaign that the seniors really appreciate it,” said Pretty.
She said what resonated with seniors was the uniqueness of the gifts.
“Each gift had meaning—they are looking forward to it again this year,” she said.
Most of the wishes range from chocolates, and liquid hand soaps to note pads and toques and gloves.
“They want the simplistic things, things that have meaning to them,” said Pretty.
The 2015 campaign drew local and provincial attention, and was named a finalist for an ABEX Marketing Award this year from the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce.
Once the customer purchases the item, they’ll bring it back to the location they picked the ornament from.
At the conclusion of the campaign, all gifts will be wrapped and delivered directly to the centres in Lloydminster and surrounding area prior to Christmas day.
Supported centres include: Dr. Cooke Extended Care Centre, Dr. Hemstock, Hearthstone Place, Jubilee Home, Lloydminster Continuing Care and Manitou Housing (Neilburg).
The list includes Southview Manor (Marsden), Paradise Hill Care Home, Pine Island Lodge (Maidstone), Pioneer Lodge, Points West Living, and Tighnduin Home (Lashburn).

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