Area residents can help a senior in need this year with a stop by local Dilworth Coffee locations.
Stores in Matthews, 110A Matthews Station St., and Mint Hill, 3565 Matthews-Mint Hill Road, serve as pick-up and drop-off locations for this year’s Be A Santa To A Senior program sponsored by Home Instead Senior Care in Charlotte.
For eight years, Home Instead has gathered the wish lists of 8,500 local seniors and collected more than 23,000 presents for seniors age 60 and older in need.
“Seniors are often not thought about during the holidays,” said Roberta Farnum, the owner of Home Instead. “The community just comes out in such a big way. They really want to help they just don’t know how or where to look.”
Home Instead places a Christmas tree at each Dilworth location with ornaments containing the name, age and three gift suggestions from each of the seniors
participating in the program. Wrapped gifts are due at Dilworth by Friday, Dec. 14.
Vernon Coleman, 63, who has been a recipient of the Be A Santa To A Senior program for three years, says many of those who receive presents – including himself — are thankful because otherwise they would not receive anything for Christmas. He lives at the Charlotte Housing Authority.
“There are a lot of people who give out things to the less fortunate and the seniors here, who some of them have outlived their families,” Coleman said.
After purchasing the presents, volunteers should wrap them and return them to the Dilworth Coffee location where they picked up the wish list. Home Instead then works with the Charlotte Housing Authority to set up Christmas parties for all of those involved in the program. The nonprofit Friendship Trays also connects clients with gifts provided by the program.
The Charlotte Housing Authority and Friendship Trays “are nonprofits we like to work with and they can best identify those who are in need, those who don’t have family around or are isolated. We (also)accept names from people who see the program and want to be on the list,” Farnum said.
Home Instead also has Christmas trees set up in three Charlotte Dilworth Coffee locations: 1235-B East Blvd., 4400 Sharon Road and 5818 Prosperity Church Road.