ROME- A group of five locals came together to spread love and put smiles on the faces of nursing home residents.
The coronavirus pandemic hit nursing homes across the state very hard and residents have not been able to see family in months.
So to bring joy and lift spirits, five women decided to start a community project called "Nursing Home Hellos from the Heart." The project encourages locals and people from around the world to write a note, or a card, or draw a picture for residents in nursing homes throughout Oneida and Herkimer counties.
Theresa Girouard, who helped organize the project, says they've seen so much support in a short period of time. "We've got them already sent from Texas, North Carolina and we have hundreds already and we started this two weeks ago."
Girouard says they would like to get 2,800 by July 3, because that would mean every resident in both counties would get one.
The group has collection bins set up at:
-Melrose Market, 208 East Main Street, Frankfort
-Cooper Kia, 5056 Commercial Drive, Yorkville
-Fenton Ford, 9515 NY Route 13, Camden
-Rome Sign Co., 510 Erie Boulevard West, Rome
-Nothing Bundt Cakes, 4759 Commercial Drive, New Hartford
Another organizer, Lorie Mahl, says these nice gestures will also help staff. "They're trying to keep these people upbeat and everybody needs to be as upbeat as they can because when you get depressed, is when sickness comes."
So far the group has reached out to 21 nursing homes across both counties, and all of them love the idea, according to Mahl.
The deadline to drop off a note, card, or picture is July 3.