Spreading Christmas Cheer to Seniors: Nativity Place Elves

“This year, it’s even more people reaching out than last year,” Lynch said. “Children from Cohox Tots come and they wear their elves hats and look like elves and they carry packages into the seniors.”

Patricia Ott enjoys a visit from the littlest elf, Delaney Dugan, during last year’s Nativity Place Elves event. MELISSA KOMAR / STAR FILE PHOTO

Doris Lynch and her son, Michael, know the holidays can be difficult for seniors — especially those who don’t have much money. So back in 2015, they started Nativity Place Elves, an effort to donate goods to seniors in need. Every year, Lynch and her son get children from Cohox Tots to dress up as elves and deliver baskets of goodies to seniors at Nativity Place nursing home.

“This year, it’s even more people reaching out than last year,” Lynch said. “Children from Cohox Tots come and they wear their elves hats and look like elves and they carry packages into the seniors.”

According to Lynch, most people donate things like jar openers, light bulbs, toilet paper and bag carriers to the seniors.

“It might not sound like a lot but there’s things they can really use in there,” she said. “The idea is to get them things that they can’t simply go out and get, especially if you don’t have a car.”

Lynch said while there are lots of toy drives for children, seniors often will be forgotten during the holidays. She wants to keep that from happening.

“It can be a sad and lonely time for them,” she said. “When they see children, they just light up.”

Lynch said many delis have committed to donating food on Dec. 19, the day seniors will receive their gifts. The event will also include a DJ and an appearance from Santa and one of his elves.

“The neighborhood has been reaching out tremendously,” said Lynch.

If you’re interested in donating to the cause, you can drop off your donations at either of the two most convenient locations: Washington Savings Bank at 2701 E. Allegheny Ave. or Port Richmond Savings at 2522 E. Allegheny Ave.