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'Adopt a Senior' campaign at a local assisted living facility

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Posted at 9:42 PM, Nov 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-18 06:25:16-05

PHOENIX — There's no need to wait to get into the holiday spirit — seniors and staff at BridgeWater Assisted Living Deer Valley in North Phoenix are already in it.

“You've got to make somebody smile or laugh every day or you've wasted your day,” says Marion Coats, a senior resident at BridgeWater.

Executive Director Jessica Newbourn has come up with an “Adopt a Senior” campaign.

“An adult coloring book with some gel pens. A warm sweater,” says Newbourn.

Many residents there suffer from a serious mental illness and were formerly without a home.

“A lot of them don't have families so the holidays here can really drag and be really a depressing time for a lot of our residents. They don't look forward to the holidays because there is nothing to celebrate,” says Newbourn.

Until now.

They’ve already started a “Santa’s Workshop” area and are getting to work.

We spoke with some seniors living at BridgeWater, who say a little goes a long way for them.

“It might not be much... but what they get is everything,” says Cecil Elrod, a senior resident.

“It's amazing that people care. A lot of these people here would just be tickled to know that someone actually thought about them, that they care,” says Coats.

The facility has already bought many items, but now the hope is for the campaign to reach the community.

“Just to see their faces light up when they get something for Christmas, because it's not something they were expecting,” says Newbourn.

The facility is taking donations to help residents who may not otherwise get presents around the holidays. Anyone interested in donating can call the facility at 602-883-2110 or see their Amazon Wishlist online here.