COPPERAS COVE — Cupid arrived early at Wind Crest Nursing Home in Copperas Cove on Monday. He came armed with blankets, Valentine’s Day cards, friendship bracelets and lots of hugs.
Students from Clements-Parsons Elementary School in Copperas Cove spent more than 100 hours making the items earlier this month and handed them out Monday to residents who greeted them with open arms and big smiles.
“It’s so, so pretty. It is just lovely,” said Polly Peaks Elmore, a resident at the nursing home, as she stroked her handmade, blue-and-gold fleece blanket and admired her large Valentine’s Day card.
“It is very nice and so soft. They did a very good job,” resident Margaret Hart said.
The students chose to visit Wind Crest residents as part of the Kids Care Club, which meets weekly at the school with 75 to 100 students participating. In December, the Kids Care Club served homemade soup and bread to residents at Cove House.
Cristina Brown’s three daughters participate in the program.
“They are actually learning to care about other people who may not have someone close by. They have fun doing the activities and learn to give as well as get, which is hard for a child,” Brown said.
Her daughters helped make the items handed out to the elderly.
“I helped tie the strings at the ends of the
blankets and helped make a poster,” said Carmen Perez, 9.
Her sister, Jada Brown, 5, helped string the beads on the bracelets.
“We spoke to the kids in advance about coming to the nursing home so that they would know what to expect. For some of the kids, they have never been around the elderly, and it can be a little uncomfortable,” said Robin Spencer, a teacher who helps with the program.
From the visit, a pen pal program will be created. At least 45 students will be paired up with a senior from the nursing home and will write a letter monthly, said Jackie Brown, site coordinator for Communities in Schools. “Many of the students in Kids Care Club are also in the Writing Club,” Brown said. “We will write the letters, but students will also learn to type them on a computer to help with corrections and develop their writing skills.”
In February, the club plans to devote its community service efforts to honor public servants.