Valentine Exchange Brings Joy
Each year the Chamber President is encouraged to share their ideas and gather the opinions of the board on how the Chamber can better serve our community. The 2020/2021 Chamber President, Kendra Oakes, felt strongly that the senior community could use extra attention, having endured an extended period of isolation due to the pandemic. This became the first focus of our mental health initiative.
Following a conversation with LaMonte Rothrock, CEO of The Cedars, we decided to facilitate the connections to create a very special Valentine Exchange. Kendra Oakes reached out to Hilary Kibler, the art teacher for Eisenhower and Roosevelt Elementary schools, who readily agreed to create 115 Valentine cards with her 2-4th grade students to give to The Cedars residents. Lisa Bower, activity director for The Cedars was all-in and helped the senior residents create Valentine cards for the students. A true exchange for all to enjoy.
While making arrangements for the card exchange, we found out that Doug Wine, a teacher at Roosevelt, has been creating Valentine cards with his 2nd and 3rd grade students to give to senior residents for over 10 years. What a wonderful and thoughtful commitment he has made to brighten the lives of all who have given or received these Valentine cards through the years. Thank you Doug.
But wait, the Valentine Exchange gets even better! Not only did the students and seniors receive Valentine cards to remind them that someone thinks they are super special, they also created Valentine videos for each other too! We thought this would be an incredible personal touch, and it truly was. You can enjoy the priceless video from The Cedars here. Check out the familiar smiling faces as they put the finishing touches on their cards and share sweet messages. We hope it warms your heart like it did ours. We greatly appreciate the enthusiasm and involvement of all who were a part of the Valentine Exchange. Your efforts added an extra sparkle of joy.