LIMA — How better to celebrate Christmas than to love your neighbor?
The pandemic has affected so many aspects of life, from incomes being diminished, to mental health issues being exacerbated, to old-fashioned loneliness setting in.
There are many ways to share kindness in your community, and here are a few ideas to help kickstart the perfect fit for you and yours:
• Check in with elders on your block to be sure their needs are being met. Some have families in the area, and some do not. Do they need groceries? Would they love a surprise baked good? Do they need help with a home repair? Do they need gifts shipped? Do their walks need cleared of snow and ice? Would your kids building a snowman in their front yard bring them joy as they watched the process through their window?
• Go Christmas caroling. The singing group should be limited to those people you live with because of the virus-spreading risk. Ring the doorbell and stand well back — in the front yard, not on the porch — and the resident can enjoy through the window. This applies to those who live in nursing homes, too. Call your favorite facility to check if an appointment should be made.
• Check with nursing homes to see their individual needs. For instance, Van Wert Manor is asking for holiday videos to be made and shared on Facebook during December. Ideas include holiday messages, singing songs, making ornaments, even simple Christmas messages. Burton’s Ridge in Lima is accepting Christmas cards or art from children, non-slip socks and tabletop Christmas trees. Donations may be mailed or dropped off at the facility, 2651 Fort Amanda Road, Lima.
• Keep an eye out for angel trees or donation bins. Many organizations have Christmas trees in their common areas decorated with slips that have a person’s clothing needs on them. Consider adding a stranger to your shopping list. For instance, the Lima Family YMCA is collecting hats, scarves and gloves for children. Donations are due Dec. 22, with the Salvation Army distributing.
• Remember your favorite charities or non-profits with a gift, monetary or otherwise.
A few organizations:
Crossroads Crisis Center, domestic violence shelter, address withheld for security. Visit j.mp/2IFERvv for a list of needs and links to its Amazon list and PayPal donation portal.
Family Promise of Lima-Allen County, network of area churches that provide shelter for homeless, 129 S. Pierce St., Lima. Visit j.mp/3m7U0TN to see things needed and how to donate.
Lima Rescue Mission, men’s homeless shelter at 216 E. Wayne St., Lima. Visit j.mp/2W76r80 to donate online, and visit j.mp/342UkgB for a list of items needed. Items may be dropped off, with mornings preferred. Call 419-224-6961 on arrival.
Samaritan House, homeless shelter at 328 W. McKibben St., Lima. Visit j.mp/2JOyMNY for a list of items needed and to donate.
A little kindness goes a long way.