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UPMC Senior Community Residents Embrace the Spirit of Giving this Holiday Season and Year-Round

PITTSBURGH, Dec. 21, 2011 – During this holiday season and year round, residents of the UPMC Senior Communities share their spirit of giving by organizing new service projects and expanding ongoing programs.

“They are proof positive that the golden years of life can indeed be very fulfilling. Local charities and organizations are the beneficiaries of these generous and giving members of our community,” said Deborah Brodine, president, UPMC Senior Communities. Following is a list of some of these projects.

Beatty Pointe Village in Monroeville collected personal care items for a group of Navy Seabees in Afghanistan. The boxes recently were shipped to them in time for the holidays. Residents plan to continue the collection through the coming months and will bake cookies to send to the veterans as well. Another group of residents make stuffed teddy bears, picture books and knit/crochet baby caps for newborns.

Cumberland Crossing Manor on the UPMC Passavant campus in the North Hills has several residents and staff who baked cookies for the Thanksgiving dinners for the North Hills Community Outreach Center. They’ve also made cookies and chocolate candy that they plan to give to the various volunteer groups who visit the senior residents throughout the holiday season.

Cumberland Woods Village, overlooking the UPMC Passavant campus, has an ongoing project in which the residents make handmade scarves for the Special Olympics Program.

Hampton Fields Village, located in Hampton Township, has a group of residents who crochet and knit lap robes and shawls that are sent to local nursing homes. They also purchase prepaid telephone cards and send them to service men and women stationed overseas.

Lighthouse Pointe Village at Chapel Harbor residents in this O’Hara Township facility are planning a white elephant sale, the proceeds of which will be donated to the World War II Memorial that is being built in Pittsburgh. 

Seneca Hills Village runs a year-long GranBuddies program at this Penn Hills residence in collaboration with O’Hara Elementary School This has been a four-year intergenerational collaboration that now includes monthly get-togethers. On Wednesday, Dec. 21, residents and staff will travel to O’Hara Elementary School for a talent show in which the residents and students participate. 

Seneca Manor Red Hat Society, the Red Hot Mama’s, sponsored a collection of toiletries for Christmas for the chaplain’s office at the Allegheny County Jail. 

Seneca Place residents have made Christmas cards, Christmas wreaths and “trash,” a snack recipe that includes cereal, peanuts and pretzels for the troops in Afghanistan. 

Seneca Place also supports an intergenerational pen pal program with a local grade school.

Sherwood Oaks residents in this Cranberry Township location have been a part of the local Caps for Kids campaign since the mid 1990’s. Each year, all year long, a group of residents make handmade knit caps and purchase others to contribute to this charity. For the 2011 campaign, residents made 142 caps and employees donated 202 for a grand total of 344 caps.

In addition, residents began a letter-writing campaign this past Veteran’s Day, which included Christmas greetings and other letters. They were then given to an organization called “A Million Thanks,” a year-round campaign to show appreciation for our U.S. military men and women, past and present, for their sacrifices, dedication and service to our country through our letters, emails, cards and prayers.

Strabane Trails Village in Washington, Pa., is home to the Knifty Knitters, a group of residents who spend the entire year knitting and crocheting hat and scarf sets. In this, their third year, 420 items have been lovingly handmade. This brings the total to more than 1,000 items that have been donated to the Salvation Army since the program began.

Strabane Woods of Washington residents participate in several service projects, including one in which they make sleeping mats from plastic shopping bags for the homeless in our area. They also visit an elementary school to participate in the “Reading with Friends” program, and they sponsor an “angel tree” for the United Way.

Sugar Creek Station located in Franklin, has a group of residents who collaborate with the Venango County Area Agency on Aging to collect HUGs (hats, underwear and gloves) to benefit the Prevent, Protect and Change Violence Free Network and Shelter.

Vanadium Woods Village in Scott Township sponsored a giving tree for which hats, scarves, mittens, gloves and socks were purchased by the residents and donated to the Salvation Army.

Weatherwood Manor in Greensburg has had a giving tree program since 2003. Each year, organizers receive the names of, and purchase gifts for, children from the Westmoreland County Children’s Bureau.

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