BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) – Two sisters from Boston have created a way to help seniors combat loneliness and isolation brought on by the pandemic.
For two years, Saffron and Shreya Patel have provided hundreds of thousands of hand-written letters to senior citizens across the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Israel. The sisters, ages 18 and 20, said they were inspired by their grandmother to start Letters Against Isolation and give seniors a way to interact with others from around the world.
“One day when my grandma received a letter from a good friend of hers, she showed me the letter and I saw how excited and happy she was,” Saffron said. “We wanted to share that beautiful power of a hand-written message with other seniors in the local area.”
The sisters started this venture by writing the letters themselves but soon needed more help to meet their demands. So, they founded the organization to have other people help them write and so far they have written over 350,000 letters."
Volunteers who sign up to help with Letters Against Isolation receive a spreadsheet every other week where they can sign up to send letters to any one of the organization’s homes that they serve. The letters are left anonymous and volunteers are welcome to write as many as they like. With all their progress, the girls say they have no plans of stopping anytime soon.
“Senior loneliness existed long before the pandemic started and it will exist long afterward,” Shreya said. “It’s clear that there is a significant problem here and if we can do something even small to bring a little bit of joy and spread some cheer, why wouldn’t we?”
WBZ's Suzanne Sausville (@wbzSausville) has more: