ROCKINGHAM — One local business has teamed up with Richmond County Aging Services to help provide local seniors with needed items for the holidays.
Earlier this month, The Speckled Paw-Rock coffee shop pinned envelopes containing wish lists from the area’s elderly to a Christmas tree for the Adopt-a-Senior program.
Manager Sherry Roberts said she started with 30 envelopes on Nov. 12 and they were all gone by the following Monday. Roberts then got 16 more, which were gone the following day.
“There’s been a tremendous outpouring of community support,” said Pam Hill, office and Nutrition assistant for RCAS.
Director Jacqueline Welch said Hill started the program last year, but it was focused more on the Meals on Wheels recipients, but this year the agency decided to expand the program to more clients.
Some of the local seniors don’t have family in the area or qualify for assistance through the Department of Social Services, according to Hill.
The goal, Hill said, is “to put a smile on some of our seniors’ faces.”
“We see it throughout the year (and) want them to see the love and support … help fill the void in what they can’t provide themselves,” Hill continued.
RCAS also tries to provide seniors with things that are often taken for granted that they don’t think about, like cleaning supplies.
Hill said Tuesday that approval was recently granted for a monetary donation box at the Speckled Paw that will collect funds throughout the year, not just at Christmastime.
She added that the agency has also received monetary donations from other local businesses and other residents call asking what the seniors need.
One person who checks in on a regular basis, according to Hill, is Kristi Newton, who uses social media to solicit donations for the Meals on Wheels program — including pet food.
Hill said Playaz Elite Motorcycle Club donated 10 turkeys and food boxes on Tuesday that were taken to seniors later in the afternoon.
Last week, RCAS held a yard sale to raise money to help purchase door and smoke alarms and build wheelchair ramps for those with Alzheimers or dementia.
On Nov. 20, the agency posted on social media that, with help with turkey dinners from Omega Psi Phi Fraternity and East Rockingham Methodist Church.
“I love Richmond County because they have been awesome,” Hill said, also thanking the agency’s volunteers who “go above and beyond to help with seniors.”
With the envelopes gone, now pinned to the tree is a note thanking those who participated in the program with a list of items:
- Boost and Ensure (vanilla and strawberry flavors)
- facial tissue
- dog and cat food (wet and dry)
- cat litter
- snacks with a long shelf life, including peanut butter crackers
Items can be dropped off at the Speckled Paw, 115 S. Lawrence St., Rockingham; or Richmond County Aging Services, 225 S. Lawrence St., Rockingham.