The 13th annual Be a Santa for Seniors program is running in Victoria Nov. 27-Dec.10. (Keili Bartlett/News staff)

Secret Santas for seniors wanted in Victoria

Gift giving program launches Nov. 27 to Dec. 10

It may not be Christmas yet, but Santa could come early to Victoria with the Be a Santa to a Senior initiative.

Starting Nov. 27 until Dec. 10, the Home Instead Senior Care office is asking everyone to take on the role of Santa for isolated seniors this holiday season. Their wishlists will be on Christmas trees in seven locations around Greater Victoria, on an ornament with the first name of a local senior and what present they’re wishing to open on Dec. 25.

Last Christmas, more than 500 seniors in Victoria were given gifts through the Be a Santa program. Common gifts include gift cards for groceries and new clothes. The program has been running in the city since 2005.

READ and WATCH MORE: Santa parades through Victoria

Participants can choose a senior from the trees, buy their present and give it to the store with the original ornament.

In the 2016 Statistics Canada census, 1.4 million elderly Canadians reported feeling lonely. This project hopes to help, especially around the holiday season.

“Social isolation is a concern among seniors, and the holidays often intensify feelings of distance and loneliness. When we deliver gifts and spend time with them, it makes a big difference,” Alistair Hicks from the Home Instead Senior Care office in Victoria, said in a press release.

“Be a Santa to a Senior helps bring comfort and a smile to many local seniors. It shows that society cares about them, and sees them as an important part of the community.”

Find your senior on a tree at Walmart Uptown, Walmart Langford, Progressive Chiropractic, First Memorial Services, Heart Pharmacy, Home Instead Senior Care and London Drugs on Yates Street.

READ MORE: Sooke community brings holiday cheer to sick elderly man


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keili.bartlett@blackpress.ca

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