At Windsor Run, an Erickson Senior Living community in Matthews, N.C., residents enjoy a passion for making a positive difference in the lives of their neighbors and members of the greater community. As a result, several resident-led groups weave acts of kindness into their holiday plans.
“Throughout the year, Windsor Run generously donates resources and gives their time freely to each other and those in need located in the surrounding area,” says executive director George Comfort. “During the holidays, this kindness magnifies, as together, we look for opportunities to make a difference in the lives of others."
From September 15 to December 15, Windsor Run community member Barbara Lucas organized a coat drive to support the 704 Coat Drive, presented by Charlotte Mechanical, benefitting the Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte. All collected coats were then given to the Salvation Army’s men, women, and children’s shelters as well as the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
“The purpose of the drive is to help the less fortunate,” says Barbara. “We place two very large collection barrels at Windsor Run. Our generous residents filled all the barrels to overflowing – twice! The coats were then picked up and delivered to the Salvation Army for distribution. The coat drive is important to our residents as well as the folks receiving the coats.”
At the same time as the coat drive, community member Ginny Bernstorf worked with neighbors to fill shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child, a project sponsored by Samaritan’s Purse’s. The shoeboxes, filled with donated toys, school supplies, and hygiene items, are delivered to children around the world.
“I’ve been a passionate supporter of Operation Christmas Child for the past twenty-five years,” says Ginny. “My Sunday school classes would hold shoebox filling parties at my home. We collected toys, socks, flashlights, school supplies, toothbrushes, hairbrushes, ornaments, and tee shirts. We would stuff the boxes to the top and leave space for hand-crafted caps, colorful masks, and little books about the Gospel.”
Determined to keep this tradition alive following her move to Windsor Run, Ginny reached out to her neighbors after she was given 50 boxes to fill.
“George Comfort enthusiastically approved the project,” she says. “As a result, in less than three weeks, 41 residents and nine staff members filled the boxes until they were bulging.”
Ginny then delivered thank you notes to all her helpers along with a red and green “I stuffed a shoebox” badge. “Operation Christmas Child is so appreciative of Windsor Run’s generosity,” she says. “I can’t wait to do it again next year.”
To learn more about the sense of community and connection at Windsor Run, click to request a brochure.