2020 has been an unusual and difficult year. Millions of people here in Chicago and around the country have been impacted by COVID-19 and its ripple effects, in one way or another. Some have lost jobs; other essential workers and healthcare professionals have had to take on additional stress and work countless hours of overtime.
Many people have been isolated and alone for most of the year, and will have to spend the holidays apart from family and friends.
Seniors have been hit particularly hard in all of these respects. Now is a good time to give back to help support the elderly, if you are able to do so. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to help make a difference, whether you have time, money, or supplies to offer.
Interested in donating or volunteering your support to a senior-focused charity here in Chicagoland? During the holiday season and all year long, here are a few local organizations that do incredible work to help the elderly:
The Greater Chicago Food Depository
The Greater Chicago Food Depository is committed to ending hunger and inspiring hope. This organization works with more than 700 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and other programs to help feed those in need, while also helping to address the root causes of hunger.
The Food Depository offers a number of programs designed to directly support older adults, including older adult community markets, which allow seniors in Cook County to select fresh produce and nonperishable food items in a safe and comfortable environment. During 2019 and 2020, these locations helped provide more than 500,000 pounds of healthy food items to Chicagoland’s elderly.
The Food Depository also offers food delivery programs for low-income senior residences; over the past few years, this service has helped provide more than a million pounds of nutritious food to older adults.
To learn more about the Greater Chicago Food Depository, find a local partner organization, or get involved, visit https://www.chicagosfoodbank.org/.
Housing Opportunities and Maintenance for the Elderly (H.O.M.E)
Access to safe, comfortable housing is an essential human need. Unfortunately, it is too often out of reach for many elderly adults here in Chicago.
Housing Opportunities and Maintenance for the Elderly (H.O.M.E) has been providing affordable housing and housing support services for older adults living on low incomes for more than 35 years. The organization offers a number of unique programs designed to help older adults live independent and socially engaged lives in reliable housing, including home upkeep and repair services, a communal shopping bus, intergenerational affordable housing options, and moving assistance.
You can learn more, donate, or volunteer at https://www.homeseniors.org/.
My Block My Hood My City
My Block My Hood My City believes in a simple mission: “Taking care of people, no matter what.” This organization has done incredible work during the COVID-19 pandemic, including starting up delivery services to help ensure that housebound older adults have access to essential supplies like hand sanitizer, health supplements, toiletries, and food.
The program is also arranging wellness check-in calls for seniors, to help minimize the devastating impacts of loneliness and isolation on Chicago’s elderly.
To learn more about how you can contribute — including donating goods such as toilet paper, disinfectant wipes, and canned foods — please visit MY BLOCK MY HOOD MY CITY.
Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly Chicago Chapter
We know firsthand that social isolation and loneliness can be enormous health challenges to the elderly. Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly (LBFE) has been dedicated to relieving isolation and loneliness among Chicago’s seniors since 1959.
For older adults who no longer have friends or family to rely on, Little Brothers offers social support and attention at no cost. This organization brings conversation, companionship, celebration, and connection to Chicago’s elderly through a variety of programming and events, including personal in-home visits, gift and care package deliveries, group parties and celebrations, social clubs, and vacation experiences.
You can learn more about volunteering or donate to LBFE online at https://littlebrotherschicago.org/.
Looking for Ideas or Inspiration? We’re Here to Help
Curious about the best way to provide care and support for the elderly adults in your community? Need some safety tips and guidelines during COVID-19? We are here and ready to help.
At Companions for Seniors, our mission is to help seniors live independently and with dignity in the comfort of their own home by empowering them to lead an active and enriched lifestyle, connecting them with their community, and nurturing meaningful relationships.
Our companions are trained and bonded, and can help provide a variety of services designed to help seniors remain in the comfort of their own homes, including providing assistance with housekeeping, activities of daily living (ADLs), driving services, and more.
We’re here to offer guidance and provide support, in whatever way we can. Whether you are looking for ideas, day-to-day help, or a patient and understanding ear, we are here for you — now, more than ever. Get in touch online using our handy online portal, or give us a call at 866-910-9020 today.