Sloane Fox, Kendall Ward, Mia Ercolani and Lucia Nicolais, sixth graders at Moorestown’s Upper Elementary School, delivered handmade holiday cards to residents of Cambridge Enhanced Senior Living on Dec. 20.
The girls made 140 cards with different designs and personalized messages so residents would know someone was thinking of them.
“I would want to make them happy and feel like they aren’t alone and that they’re actually appreciated by someone, because some of them don’t have any family that could visit them over the holidays,” Fox said.
But due to COVID, Ward, Ercolani, Fox and Nicolais couldn’t personally deliver the cards.
“I was thinking about the look on their faces when they found out,” Nicolais said. “I was happy to think about how happy they’ll be if they’ll see that we did that.”
The sixth graders have a simple message for others – help spread positivity.
“Our schools and teachers have definitely given us opportunities to be kind,” Ercolani noted. “And they shared a lot of videos with us about being kind and sharing happiness in the world.”
“Being yourself is a big part of kindness,” she added. “If you share your own kindness in the world then that would be your own – and being yourself can make a big difference, because when you are yourself, people won’t judge as much.”
Uplifting the spirits of others brought Ward, Nicolais, Fox and Ercolani closer together.
“I think it was the happiness we shared, coloring in each little line,” Fox explained. “It might just be markers and colored pencils, but it could mean so much more to someone else.”
The students have similar takeaways from doing something for nursing-home residents.
“We realized it would be a big deal to them just because – maybe not to other people but definitely to them – because they’re in a nursing home all day, and when they’re in a nursing home all day, they might feel lonely,” said Ercolani.
“I want them to feel happy about themselves and I want them to be excited and I want them to feel really happy about everything that we did for them,” Ward said.
“I feel like before somebody passes or before they travel on, I feel like giving them a gift,” Fox said. “Even if it’s a small one, it still makes a big impact because they actually know that somebody cared.”