With recommendations to stay at home because of the pandemic, it’s tough for elderly people to keep stocked up on household supplies. To help, volunteers in Rapid City are putting care packages together.
Sunny Red Bear and her partner are delivering supplies to seniors in predominantly Native communities.
“We’re starting in Lakota Homes and after today we’ll reach about 55 homes so far.”
Their project started about a week ago. Packages include canned goods, grooming and cleaning supplies.
“Our goal is just to continue to take in donations and at least to have our elder have a start up package of things that they are are going to need during this time in quarantine because a lot of the supplies out there is very limited and then also they don’t necessarily have the transportation or the capability of going out there themselves and getting these things.”
Red Bear says this can be a lonely time for elders and they want this effort to remind them they matter. Nikkole Bostnar is Sunny’s partner. She says only they handle all packages and deliveries. They wear gloves and take precautions to keep recipients safe.
“Everybody has been super grateful with what we’ve been giving them. Sunny and I have just tried to focus on essentials for a household. We visited a few elders who hadn’t left their house in about seven days. So we just want to make sure that they have things that we would personally use in our homes.”
Bostnar says people nominate elders to receive a care package on Facebook, then send in the names and addresses for deliveries.
“We just want to make sure that our elders are taken care of. A lot of elders, especially in the Native American community are normally raising their grandkids and their great grand kids. So a lot of them are in need of more supplies.”
The women are working with a non-profit that will cover any taxes on monetary donations. If possible, they may also consider recurring deliveries for elders.