As isolation continues to affect local seniors, Home Instead of Venice renews the important Be a Santa to a Senior program promising another season of holiday cheer.

Be A Santa to a Senior supports older adults who may be overlooked, isolated or alone during the holiday season.

This is the 10th year for the local program that gives back to older adults and reminds them they are cherished by our community.

The gifts collected, which are often necessities such as toiletries, clothing and blankets, make a big impact and help area seniors combat the holiday blues.

“We’ve all experienced feelings of loneliness during the pandemic, and seniors are at a particularly high risk for isolation,” said Mike Levine, owner of the Home Instead office serving south Sarasota County including, Venice, Osprey, Nokomis, North Port and Englewood, in a news release. “Be a Santa to a Senior shows the older adults in our community that they are valued and thought of during the holidays.”

This year, the Home Instead Venice office will be working with local organizations to provide 4,000 gifts to nearly 1,000 seniors in the area.

Individuals can visit one of the participating locations and look for the Be a Santa to a Senior tree on display through Dec. 17. Each tree will be decorated with ornaments featuring seniors’ first names and gift suggestions.

Holiday shoppers can choose an ornament, buy the requested gift and return it unwrapped to the store with the ornament attached.

“A small act of kindness can make a big difference. And a heartfelt gift brightens the lives of older adults who may feel alone during the season,” said Levine. “Finding ways to care and support one another is important now more than ever and we are grateful for the community’s involvement every year.”

Be a Santa to a Senior trees can be found at:

• Beall’s Outlet, 515 Tamiami Trail, Venice

• Beall’s Outlet, 1667 South U.S. 41 Bypass, Venice

• Beall’s Outlet, 4251 Tamiami Trail, Venice

• Beall’s Outlet, 1500 Placida Road, Englewood

• Beall’s Outlet, 18529 Tamiami Trail, North Port

• Beall’s Outlet, 501 North Beneva Road, Sarasota

Since the program’s inception 18 years ago, Be a Santa to a Senior has helped provide more than 2 million gifts to over 750,000 seniors in North America and attracted upward of 65,000 volunteers.

Gifts will be delivered to seniors in time for the holidays. Shoppers are encouraged to purchase as many gifts for seniors as they would like.

For more information about the program, visit BeaSantatoaSenior.com.

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