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Community residents send heartfelt messages to healthcare providers and residents at senior living homes

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Those who are most vulnerable in the community like our elderly population, for example, can feel cut off from the world and their families because of COVID-19.

Because of the loneliness senior citizens can feel during this time, Great Rivers United Way and local universities got together to ask the public to write uplifting letters to residents at senior living facilities.

Kim Scholze, the Recreational Therapy Director at Bethany Saint Joseph (BSJ), said BSJ has received over 100 sincere letters so far. Scholze said these letters had brought a little extra cheer to their residents since family is not allowed to visit.

"These letters have brought a lot of smiles to our resident's faces." Scholze said. "It is amazing to think that people from the general public are writing these letters and don't even personally know who our residents are. With the social distancing rule in place, this is a great way for the community and students to interact with our residents, even though they are not able to see them face to face."

People can also send a letter to those who are on the front lines of this pandemic, our local healthcare providers, by visiting Ugetconnected.org

Julie Nelson, the Community Engagement Coordinator for Great Rivers United way, said healthcare providers feel very loved during this time after receiving the sincere letters.

"I think we recognize as a community that the people working in healthcare are taking a significant risk for themselves all for the benefit for the community and us," said Nelson

To mail a letter to residents at BSJ, address the following:
Any Resident
c/o Kim Scholze, Rec. Therapy
Bethany St. Joseph Care Center
2501 Shelby, Rd.
La Crosse, WI 54601

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Lindsey Ford

Lindsey Ford is a multimedia journalist.

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