Operation Christmas CHEER a success as volunteers deliver gifts to Sussex Co. seniors
GEORGETOWN, Del. – A local non-profit continued their decades-long tradition of bringing some holiday cheer to Sussex County’s senior citizens. “You can’t even put it into words, the gratitude that people have. These are people that may not have anything at all – and in many cases, will not have anything at all for Christmas day,” said CEO of CHEER Ken Bock.
For 27 years, the non-profit CHEER has been delivering smiles and comfort on Christmas morning for Delaware’s seniors. This year, volunteers worked through the morning to pack up gifts, a hot turkey meal, fruit, flowers, and hand painted Christmas cards. “In many cases these are individuals that live alone and have nobody else. We come deliver the Christmas meal, gifts, and Christmas cheer,” said Bock.
Next, the Christmas goodies were whisked away to be delivered throughout Sussex County. 47ABC followed two folks who spent their morning delivering to seniors. As volunteers Jim and Fran Smith pulled up to their first delivery, they got ready to bring the gifts to the front door. “I hope he’s home now. I talked to him yesterday. He’s supposed to be here,” said Jim.
As the door swung open, the man inside cracked a huge grin while Jim and Fran handed over the Christmas goodies. “Good morning! I told you I’d come visit you today. Merry Christmas! We got some presents for you,” said Jim.
Jim and Fran have been involved with CHEER for a number of years, and marked Christmas of 2020 by visiting some of the folks they help through the program. CEO of CHEER Ken Bock says it’s volunteers like Jim and Fran that make all the difference. He says that’s because many seniors who they serve on Christmas Day have no one else to expect knocking on their doors. “There’s somebody out there that cares enough to give up their time and their talents to help make sure that that individual has something to celebrate Christmas morning,” said Bock.
Bock says that volunteers prepared for today’s delivery services for months. He adds that none of it could have been possible without the support of the community, whether it be individual volunteers or businesses that chipped in.