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Give & Take: Sharing the Love: Valentine’s Day Letters of Love

Kelly Whalen  Follow

When it came to Valentine's Day this year, many of us were lucky enough to be surrounded by our quarantine crew. Whether it was an invite to Zoom happy hour with fun V-day themed backgrounds, a Galentine's Day gathering with roommates or even some chocolates dropped off from a safe social distance, Americans got creative to ensure they could celebrate despite the tough times.

But for others, especially solo agers and the estimated 1.4+ million people living in nursing homes, the pandemic has prohibited them from seeing the people they really care about in person for nearly a year. While nurses, aides and assisted living facility coordinators – like the angels who work at my grandmother’s nursing home in Connecticut – are doing their best to arrange activities, nothing can truly replace in-person connections with families, friends and the community.

At Prosek, we’re all about finding the whitespace, whether that’s for our clients looking to drive thought leadership or our Give Back team identifying populations in need. Beyond that, we emphasize that we don’t need to reinvent the wheel; if a good idea works, we should stick with it! 

So, thanks to the popularity of our participation in Letters of Love over the holiday season and in advance of Valentine’s Day, Prosek’s Give Back team decided to coordinate another round of “Write a Letter to an Elder,” an initiative by “Love for Our Elders.” 

Founded in 2013, Love for Our Elders is a non-profit that has brought joy to tens of thousands of seniors across the globe, motivating and inspiring people to give back to their elders in over 60 countries and six continents. The organization collects handwritten cards and letters and mails them to elders in senior communities across the globe to bring some joy and humanity to those who may not be able to see family.

During our first campaign in November, we were so impressed to see the engagement from our colleagues, from Allie Rudden’s masterful wreath drawing, to Sam Cohen’s tasteful colored pencil shading. As expert writers by trade, taking the time to write a letter to a stranger isn’t the biggest time commitment, but certainly one that can make a big difference for the 7.7 million community-dwelling adults age 65 and older in the United States who were socially isolated in 2020.

This Valentine’s Day, we hoped to warm the hearts of our elders across the country, especially those who have been disproportionally impacted by the pandemic and resulting loneliness, with letters from our Prosek family. While holidays can serve as a great reminder to give our time and energy to deserving causes, let’s remember to share the love throughout the year.

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