GUELPH – Retiree Sharon Wolters has started the “greetings from my heart” project, where letters and greeting cards are delivered to hospitals and senior homes in Guelph.
This idea started at the beginning of the pandemic, when Wolters heard that seniors in homes were not being allowed visitors for COVID-19 safety. “I thought of my mom Louise,” said Wolters, adding that if she were alive she would’ve been isolated in a home as well during the pandemic and the thought was heartbreaking.
Wolters realized that while residents couldn’t have visitors, they could still receive letters and cards.
She added that particularly for seniors receiving something as small as a greeting card “brings them some comfort and joy.”
Wolters started advertising this program online and at local stores, looking for volunteers to help make the cards.
“I was kind of blown away,” said Wolters on the community response.
Fiona Miletic, marketing coordinator at the Elliot Community, a seniors home in Guelph, detailed in an email what the greeting card program has meant to residents there.
“Everyone loves getting mail and to receive a well wish or happy holiday card from complete strangers just brightens our residents day,” she wrote.
“The thoughtfulness and caring of a complete stranger means so much to our residents, we are so appreciative of what this organization has done, it is dear to our hearts.”
There has been about four card drives so far, and now they’re working on the fifth, planned for the end of summer, but cards can be dropped off at anytime.
While volunteers have been supportive, the numbers have started to wain. Wolter emphasized the need for more help making the cards, “I just need more people.”
Volunteers can make or buy greeting cards, or write letters of encouragement, and drop them off at Wolters home, 95 Ingram Drive in Guelph. From there Wolters personally delivers all of the cards to retirement homes and hospitals in Guelph. Wolter also has blank card stock if needed.
While the cards go to places in Guelph, Wolter encourages letter submissions from anywhere, noting that she’s even received one from as far away as Montana.
To volunteer email firstname.lastname@example.org.