Local nonprofit Phil’s Friends Inc. has teamed up with other local organizations to gear up for its third annual Silver Bells Coweta to help Coweta seniors during the holiday season.
Phil’s Friends Inc. aims to help others improve their ability to care for their loved ones with memory loss disorders for as long as possible, according to its website.
The initiative, which was started three years ago, is very similar to the Angel Tree project the Salvation Army hosts each year for less fortunate children to receive Christmas gifts, according to Lori Lawrence with Phil’s Friends.
Lawrence said Silver Bells Coweta supports either homebound seniors or seniors with no support from family. Last year Silver Bells Coweta assisted over 100 seniors. This year, the goal is 200 or more. She said Silver Bells needs help reaching the seniors who need it most.
“Silver Bells Coweta is happy to say we are off and running with this year’s campaign,” Lawrence said. “We have launched our website www.silverbellscoweta.com .”
Lawrence said the website can be used to register to adopt a senior, volunteer or refer a senior. Volunteers are needed to wrap and sort gifts.
“We already have 30 plus families signed up to adopt a senior,” Lawrence said. “Many of the people that adopt a senior have done it since we first started. Those who adopt a senior shop for their senior based on a list the senior submits. Items are then dropped off at a designated place and time where volunteers will help wrap the gifts.”
Lawrence said seniors that are referred are asked to submit a list of needs and wants. She said last year, many seniors asked for disinfectant, cleaning supplies or other hygiene necessities. She said she wants seniors to get both what they need and also something they’d like to have.
“We also have a gift registry on our website for those who do not necessarily want to shop for a senior,” she said. “The items on the registry are items that many seniors request or like to have. The registry is at WalMart and items are shipped directly to a designated location. Monetary donations can also be made at the website.
Lawrence said last year youth from the community also wrote handwritten Christmas cards to include for delivery. Girl Scouts or other civic organizations that are interested are also encouraged to volunteer to make the homemade cards this year.
Lawrence said all communication is done by email. Logistics regarding delivery of items are handled by Silver Bells Coweta for the safety of the seniors. She said the best way to contact Silver Bells Coweta is by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by visiting the website.
“We live in a community that does not mind helping people,” Lawrence said. “We always get great support and feedback from our volunteers and donors. We are very blessed and grateful.”
Other organizations that have partnered with Phil’s Friends include:
The Salvation Army
Sisters for Society
Summit Family YMCA
VFW Post 2667 Auxiliary
Three Rivers Regional Commission
Veterans Health and Wellness Foundation