Taking a new approach in response to the realities of the pandemic
As Little Brothers continues to watch over 1,800 Great Friends throughout the province amid the pandemic, recent announcements by the Quebec government have made the activities organized by the charity to reach out to socially isolated seniors during the holidays more vital and meaningful than ever. Little Brothers has worked tirelessly since the beginning of the pandemic to provide ongoing support to lonely women and men 75 and older and will now be building on this with a series of initiatives, activities and volunteer efforts to help alleviate their isolation at this important time of year. The rest of the population is urged to do the same.
Bringing some holiday cheer to those who might otherwise be forgotten
Holiday gatherings are often the only opportunity socially isolated seniors have to enjoy special moments of warmth and togetherness with others. Sadly, this year, given the pandemic-related restrictions in place, even this will be impossible. Since Little Brothers will not be able to hold their traditional Christmas dinners on December 25, something so many seniors look forward to, they have put alternative arrangements in place to provide a measure of comfort and reassurance to these Great Friends who need it more than ever. Initiatives include:
- An advent calendar sent to all of the Great Friends in the Little Brothers family
- The preparation and delivery of more than 1,800 gift and treat boxes, complete with a personalized greeting for seniors across the province
- A phone chain on December 24 and 25, where volunteers check in with Great Friends with holiday greetings
- A pre-recorded phone message by Béatrice Picard, which will be sent to Great Friends on Christmas Day
- Letters and crafts by students from partner schools to be distributed to socially isolated seniors.
These efforts have been made possible through the generosity of individual and corporate donors, as well as Little Brothers’ dedicated province-wide group of volunteers.
“This season will be particularly hard on Quebec seniors who don’t have a support system to turn to. That’s why we at Little Brothers have redoubled our efforts and come up with a number of original ways to remind them that we are here to lift their spirits and make them feel loved. Since many of us won’t have as much to do over the holidays this year, there’s no better time to drop off a meal to a lonely senior you may know, or do something else that makes them feel special.”
Caroline Sauriol, Executive Director, Little Brothers
“Thank you for all the wonderful ways you show you care. And thank you for bringing Ginette, Henri and Nathalie into my life. They’re like an adopted family to me. They may not be next-door, but they’re family all the same. And that makes all the difference!”
Monique, 76, one of our Great Friends
Senior Support Line: Pairing Socially Isolated Seniors with Volunteer Phone Pals
Little Brothers invites people across Quebec to take advantage of the extra time at home this holiday season to call an older person they know — a neighbour, a great-aunt, a great-uncle — whom they cannot visit in person. For seniors who would like to join our calling list, the Senior Support Line is free and available province-wide. The aim is to pair women and men 75 and older who are living in loneliness with a volunteer Phone Pal who has been specially trained by the Little Brothers team. Signing up is easy: simply call 1-877-805-1955.