Hearts for the Holidays

Photo: Dreamstime.com

Photo: Dreamstime.com

by Heather Lindsay Sell, 11/17/2018

Holidays are just around the corner. How the heck did that happen? And where did 2018 go? Jeesh!

Especially this time of year, I can’t help reflect on things that are important to me, that I feel blessed for. Family, friends, my fuzzies, job, house, etc. A place to go during the holidays. Then, I wonder how I can contribute to someone else’s happiness, especially during this time of year when it can be even more needful.

For years, I’ve participated in a volunteer event called “Hearts for the Holidays”. It’s a holiday card making event where you hand-make holiday cards, sign, and they get sent to either kids in the hospital, military stationed overseas, home-bound seniors, etc. It’s really not that hard to do and I have a lot of fun getting creative. My beautiful mom has done this with me for the last few years too, and so has my daughter before she moved away.

So, in the spirit of giving thanks, I’ll be searching for and sharing various non-profits and organizations around the Tampa Bay area that coordinate holiday drives for kids, military, elderly, in-need, etc.

One of the gift drives that is very near and dear to me is collecting gifts for seniors that are home-bound, in a nursing home, or live in a rehab center. I always think of my grandfather with this one. Not that my grandfather didn’t have lots of love and people visiting him, but all I could think was, “what if he didn’t?” And how much I would have appreciated someone doing this for him.

In memory of my grandfather, that’s where I’m starting. “Elves for the Elderly”. Aging Solutions, the Office of Public Guardian, hosts the “Elves for the Elderly’ gift drive by collecting gift items for indigent, incapacitated seniors in 5 counties (Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, Brevard, Manatee). The seniors create a list of wish items so you know what they’d like. You can find the seniors’ wish list posted on their website here: http://www.aging-solutions.org/elvesforelders.html

If you know of an organization or a coordinator that’s hosting a gift, food, holiday card drive, etc., feel free to email me at contact@shoutoutinc.com

Here’s to a wonderful holiday season!

~Heather, ShoutOUT®

P.S. It’s always a good idea to research a non-profit before making charitable donations. Here are a few resources to research before giving. This is by no-means an all-inclusive list.:

About ShoutOUT

In 2009, I started sharing my experiences, food, travels, and events, along with all of the incredible people and businesses I was meeting and discovering. What began as a fun hobby had such an overwhelming response, in 2010 ShoutOUT was born! I continue to stretch the boundaries locally, regionally, and nationally, discovering, sharing and connecting as I go.
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