Local senior communities assemble nearly 1,000 “Deployment Care Packages”
CAMBRIDGE, MA – When Teresa Burns, Executive Director at The Cambridge Homes Independent and Assisted Living, received her son’s deployment date overseas, she sprang into action to ensure his entire unit would have essential travel items. This was no small task — 325 soldiers were deploying on a three-leg trip, and the soldiers were set to receive a different care package on each leg of the journey.
With 975 goody bags to assemble, Burns reached out for support on social media, where friends and family stepped in to help. She also sent out an email to her colleagues at Senior Living Residences, which manages The Cambridge Homes and 16 other Independent, Assisted Living, and Compass Memory Support communities across New England. That’s when staff and residents at several communities jumped in to help, creating over 500 bags.
The stories were heartwarming: Residents and veterans at Nashoba Park Assisted Living in Ayer helped assemble dozens of care packages and personal cards. Veterans living at Concord Park Senior Living in West Concord chipped in as well, enjoying an opportunity to give back to fellow soldiers. Cornerstone at Hampton in Hampton, NH fielded donations from their own associates and families. Residents at Heights Crossing in Brockton set up an assembly line to pack materials. In total, seven Senior Living Residences contributed.
The Cambridge Homes also received support from younger students, including a class at Brooks Elementary School in Medford who helped package many of the goody bags, incorporating handwritten notes from the students. Nottingham and Stratham Memorial Elementary Schools in New Hampshire contributed items and notes as well.
“It wasn’t easy to say goodbye to my son, but being able to send off cards and care packages to his unit was really special,” said Burns. “I am still blown away by the outpouring of support I received from colleagues and friends, and I want to thank each of them from the bottom of my heart.”
Located on Mount Auburn Street just a mile from Harvard Square, the not-for-profit Cambridge Homes features Independent and Assisted Living apartments and offers residents a wide variety of cultural, educational, wellness and social programs. Learn more online at www.TheCambridgeHomes.org.