Announcement Operation Christmas Cheer -- An Update to a Weird Year

Jeff Westover

Chief Elf Officer
MMC Founder
Santa's Elf
Kringle Radio DJ
Oct 7, 2004
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Cache Valley, Utah
jeffwestover.com
I have not been dragging my feet on Operation Christmas Cheer. After discussing this with some folks in the senior community industry and getting their thoughts here is how we are going to proceed.

The need this year is greater than ever. There are thousands of folks in facilities that have not seen their families in months. I'm told for some the loneliness and sense of abandonment is unbearable.

There are two areas of this where we can try to help. First, finding those who are alone in their own homes and, Second, reaching out to those in facilities.

For the first group, I'm going to post up a sign-up to collect individual names and addresses, as is our usual tradition. I am asking that as many of our members spend a little bit of time on this and try to think not only of family members but any neighbors who are shut in for any reason. A Christmas card is not much, but in 2020, I believe it is special. We need to find these folks.

For the second group, we're going to need to have a more controlled action. I will be setting up a sign up for those who are able to become a facility advocate that I will call a Christmas Captain.

In this role, you will need to contact and coordinate with a local establishment -- and then coordinate things with me.

Privacy is a huge thing for folks running these places and they can't give out a whole lot of information. We will mostly be working with first names only.

They love the idea and say the need is tremendous. We need to be careful that we do not overwhelm ourselves and that we deliver on what we commit to. That's why we need Christmas Captains to OWN this process.

You will need to meet with the facilty, get their requirements and then coordinate with me in putting together the list.

We will publish the list and have the cards all SENT TO YOU, Christmas Captain, and you will need to deliver to the facility. I'm told that some facilities will want it just dropped off while others might want to include "the mail" in an already schedule Christmas event.

(The facility I'm working with is very excited, and has even promised me some pictures or video, which will be nice, though not required).

Most of these facilities have a lot of residents. How much can we handle? That is going to be up to you, Christmas Captains. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to get out in to your community and find a facility you can work with. We will want to have a list of names (even if first names only) by about the middle of November.

So...who can commit to being a Christmas Captain? I don't want to make this a list of 2000 cards...we need to keep this to about four or five captains max. MAX. I know the need is great. And we're going to need a lot of help in getting this publicized so it can be supported. But we need to proceed carefully.

Thoughts, ideas or concerns? Please discuss frankly.
 

KimB

North Pole's Auditor
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I'm going to call a couple of pastors I know. We have a homeless shelter and folks who live there are trying to prepare to find affordable housing. We have so many nursing homes in our area, I'm going to see if these pastors can suggest a way to move forward in identifying residents who have no family.

Thank you, Jeff.
 
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WintersElf

Fruit Cake Baker
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Jul 31, 2015
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sounds great...my area doesnt have facilities...or a homeless shelter..small town folks here..but great idea.
 
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SharonK

Christmas Fanatic
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Jun 23, 2019
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Jeff, can this be done from Canada as well ? We have a few facilities in my area that I know well. If so I'll start enquiring into it to see which ones would be willing to participate.
 
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Jeff Westover

Chief Elf Officer
MMC Founder
Santa's Elf
Kringle Radio DJ
Oct 7, 2004
16,732
16,475
1,222,381
Cache Valley, Utah
jeffwestover.com
Jeff, can this be done from Canada as well ? We have a few facilities in my area that I know well. If so I'll start enquiring into it to see which ones would be willing to participate.
I don't see why it could not. I would strongly encourage all of our Canadian members to get behind it.
 

shrcpark

Reindeer Groomer
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Jun 15, 2018
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I'd like to send cards this year. Please include me, but not as a captian
 

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