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Care Cards: TD3 Pen Pals for Seniors Expands Program

Now Accepting Cards, Letters, and Drawings for Local Shut-in Seniors

Post Date:03/26/2020 4:28 PM

Boy Thumbs Up Holding Sign: Hang In There and We are Thinking of You!During this time of school closures and social distancing, where we are all encouraged to stay inside and the elderly and other vulnerable people are completely homebound, more and more people of all ages are finding themselves feeling isolated, anxious, lonely, stressed, afraid, and unsure of what the near future holds.

Many seniors in our community are shut in right now in assisted living homes and communities, where they are isolated from everyone except their caregivers. They are allowed no visitors, not even their own families and loved ones, as they are in one of the high-risk groups for contracting COVID-19.

Care Cards has been designed to communicate with those seniors who are isolated in assisted living homes around Tempe, the Valley, and possibly the state. Since this age group prefers their traditional communication style of paper cards, letters and pictures, we believe sending greetings of love, hugs, and smiles through the mail will bring them some comfort and cheer despite the isolation being forced upon them with the Coronavirus pandemic.

“Isolation not only causes loneliness, it can negatively impact a senior’s physical and mental health,” said Linda Arters, Certified Senior Advisor and Certified Living-in-Place Specialist. “We want Care Cards to be their isolation-busters during this national crisis.”

The elderly are people who have given all of us so much through the years. They have served in our military. They have fought for basic human rights we all enjoy to this day. They have been through World War I and World War II, Vietnam, and countless other wars, fighting for our freedom. Why not give back to those who have given us all so much?

Words of encouragement, whether through handmade or store-bought notes, letters, or cards, bright, colorful hand-drawn pictures, or even photos can lift people up, make them smile, or give them hope during these uncertain times. Kindness shown through these means can also bring happiness and feelings of fulfillment to those sending them in addition to those receiving them.

If you, your class, or someone you know simply wants to send positive, caring messages to any senior or elderly person needing some love right now, whether it be through words or drawings, please follow the guidelines below. If you have questions or concerns, please contact Amy Garza at penpals@tempeschools.org.

If you need supplies in order to create these things, please reach out to Amy as well.

Care Cards Flyer

Here are the Guidelines:*

Girl Holding Sign: We Can Do This• Items MUST fit in a 9” x 12” envelope.

• Use 8 ½ by 11” paper/construction paper.

• Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before you start!

• Be creative! You can add things to your paper, cut things out, glue/tape things on, etc.

• Write big (and dark), so elderly eyes can see it.

• Bright, colorful drawings/pictures are welcome and encouraged!

• Items can be handmade or store bought.

*We will follow CDC guidelines and hold all items for at least 24 hours before distributing to the elderly.

Drop-off Locations*:Care Cards Logo with Heart

NEW: Now you can drop off at any of our Grab-&-Go Meal sites Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. (No meals on Friday, April 10, due to Spring Holiday.) 

• Mail Plus - near Sprouts in Southern Palms Shopping Center
1628 E. Southern Ave., Tempe, 85282
(Mon-Fri, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.)

• Mail & More - next to Babbo in Fry's Shopping Center
9920 S. Rural Rd., Tempe, 85284
(Mon-Fri, 8:30 a.m. - 6 p.m., Sat. 9-5)

*You can mail to:
Care Cards,
c/o Mail & More
9920 S. Rural Rd. #108
Tempe, AZ 85284

Want to be a pen pal? 

Do you like writing letters? Do you like receiving letters? If you, your class, or someone you know would like to be a pen pal, please complete a short survey at www.tempeschools.org/penpals. You might just make a new friend and help someone along the way!

Elderly people in Tempe are looking for any type of interaction and would love to hear from you!

During the school closure, students from Arredondo, Holdeman, and Ward Traditional Academy, who are currently participating in the Pen Pals for Seniors Program, are continuing to write to their pen pals at Oakwood Creative Care, Friendship Village, and the Area Agency on Aging.

These students and others have also been creating positive messages and uplifting notes to show their pen pals and other shut in seniors they care.

Boy Holding Sign: Hang In ThereBoy and Dog Holding Sign: You Are Amazing

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