Church group makes it a happy Easter for South Jersey nursing home

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- In this week's "Be Kind," we catch up on a church group's mission to make it a happy Easter for seniors at a South Jersey nursing home.

Vicky Olson organized last week's Hope Church delivery to benefit residents of the Manor Care in Voorhees.

She's been collecting donated items for every holiday, from donors as far away as California and the United Kingdom!

Olson and church volunteers put together 95 baskets with hand soaps, toiletries, wash cloths, an Easter cup, Easter eggs filled with candy, a devotional book and a specially knitted prayer pocket blanket.

They also provided craft projects for the seniors to complete and Easter decorations so they could celebrate together in the nursing home.

The volunteers also sent 120 gift bags to the staff at Manor Care.

Olson said she lost her grandmother in February from injuries due to a fall and knows how difficult the pandemic's restrictions have been on families all over the world.

"My grandmother was 94-years-old, living at home alone during COVID. Our family stayed away in hopes of keeping her safe. We sent cards, letters, visited through a window a couple of times, but it highlighted to me just how alone some of our seniors are, especially those who don't have family," Olson said.

For Christmas, Olson and the Hope Church volunteers donated 101 stuffed stockings for the seniors. Then they moved on to Valentine Smiles where they delivered 95 Valentine bags with hot chocolate, marshmallow toppers, candy, teddy bears and more.

Next up is Mother's Day, Father's Day and a "summer fun" basket.

Olson plans to expand the outreach to a second senior center in the area.
Copyright © 2021 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.