Letters for our Elders – English students from Rightword Language Institute are sending letters to residents at Milford. Picture: Aline Sousa
English students mobilise to write letters to residents at the Milford Care Centre
By I Love Limerick Correspondent Aline Sousa
Being together has never been so difficult and yet so essential, the pandemic has forced us apart and at the same time has been showing the importance of keeping our beloved ones close through little gestures: a call, a message, a card. It’s inevitable to question ourselves how Christmas will be this year and what we can do to support one another in this difficult time.
Fortunately, Christmas is also a time for solidarity. That’s why the English students from Rightword Language Institute decided to put an effort to write letters, short stories and simple messages to entertain and show sympathy to the residents being looked after by the Milford Care Centre in Castletroy.
— Paloma (@holapamola) November 20, 2020
As foreign students, most of them know the feeling of being far away on special occasions and this inspired them to write those letters for those who might be far from their families this Christmas. Duilio Deangeli, English student from Argentina, says, “When I discovered the idea of Letters for our Elders early this year on social media, I immediately thought of my grandma and the opportunity of writing a mere letter that informs a little about her beloved boy, like simulating the relation between grandma and grandson. I see this as something I would appreciate if I were at her age and in her situation. I thought writing letters to Milford was the perfect fit for the Letters for our Elders initiative.”
The correspondence is being received and organized by Milford’s activities department and will be distributed to the residents 7 days after they have arrived for health and safety reasons. The volunteer coordinator, Eileen Murphy, explains the importance for the patients to receive the messages, “Our residents have experienced huge change to their Activities of Daily Living this year, with so much of their routine altered, most importantly, disruption and cancellation of nursing home visits by family and friends. So loneliness and social isolation has been a huge factor. Therefore your letters and cards will brighten up the residents’ day and will help decorate their room for Christmas. Whilst some residents have lots of extended family, we have several residents with little or no direct relatives.”
If you got inspired by the initiative and want to be part of it, you can also send them a message. The letters can be sent by mail and for free, you just need to write “FREEPOST” on the corner where you would put the stamp. Also, it’s important to write your own address at the back of the envelope.
Michelle Clifford, activities coordinator
Milford Care Centre
On social media use the hashtag #lettersforourelders
For more about the upcoming Milford Care Centre Light up a Memory event, go HERE
For more stories about Milford Care Centre, go HERE