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Seminole is introducing a new club to our campus called Sending Sunshine, dedicated to spreading happiness and reducing the feeling of loneliness among elderly individuals residing in retirement and care homes. 


The club has a mission to brighten the lives of senior citizens who experience loneliness or isolation. Members of the club reach out with handwritten cards to make a positive impact on the hearts of these long lived people. By fostering connections, building companionship, and organizing creative activities, Sending Sunshine aims to give them their own spotlight to feel like they’re loved and belong. The club helps students collect volunteer hours, create important relationships with the elderly, and give insight to both sides of the spectrum that benefit their mindsets. 


The club president, Abra Stalker, started the club on her own with the help of her determination and passion for the club. She personally states: “This project is something very personal to me. I grew up with grandparents in a nursing home and got to experience the atmosphere of senior living facilities firsthand. How lonely it was, especially around the holidays, was depressing to me. This club lets me spread awareness and discuss this issue with others.” Seeing how many senior citizens are in a state of struggle and loneliness, her passion comes from wanting to give back to them and help bring a smile to their lovely faces. It truly can make a difference in someone’s day.


Sending Sunshine provides various opportunities for volunteering, as well as great looking memberships on college applications. By taking time out of their day to help senior citizens thrive, in return students receive volunteer hours for their hard work, which pays off with good looking experience. 


Many colleges and universities highly value community service activities, as it shows a commitment to making a positive impact on the world. By engaging in this meaningful activity, students can not only meet their requirement for volunteering hours, but also demonstrate their dedication to helping others.


Health Academy Junior Aisha Miyanji wanted to share her experience of the first club interest meeting, that was held October 30, 2023: “I went because the club sounded really interesting. I love spending time with elderly people. Some are chill, sweet and cute and I enjoy their company, so I wanted to participate in something nice to give back to them. I hope to become an officer and be able to put in my own hard work and see it thrive.” She also mentioned her outlook on the club’s future: “I think this club will be successful in the future because it’s cute and nice and chill, like a lil hangout with like minded people. The concept is really great and unique, and I can see it getting bigger as the year goes on.” She has a virtuous outlook on the club, and like many other students, hopes to see it expand and get more involved in the future.


This club benefits students, but also provides senior citizens the chance to benefit their own mindsets. Receiving cards from students can help bring them joy and brighten their day. 


Many older individuals face feelings of loneliness or isolation, especially if they are in care facilities or living alone. Elderly individuals who may not have frequent visitors or social interactions can feel a disconnect when living in these homes, who don’t get to interact with younger generations often.


 Reaching out can help the elderly combat feelings of loneliness, reduce their stress, and improve some of their overall mental well-being. Not only that, but it helps bridge the generation gap between the elderly and teenagers. Reaching out personally helps to weld the distance and provide each other insight that isn’t taught by society, but by learning one-on-one.

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