Breanna Brosko spent the weekend making the season brighter for many of the community’s seniors, with a lot of help from the Comox Valley at large.
The 17-year-old Brosko is the founder of the Adopt-A-Grandparent initiative. At the end of November, she set up Christmas trees at locations throughout the Valley, with tags on them. Each tag was numbered, with a suggested gift for a local senior. There were more than 300 tags made up and they were all taken by Comox Valley residents within a week.
“Pretty much every gift was returned, and then there were lots of people who donated gifts that weren’t for anyone in particular,” said Brosko. “That was really nice, because it meant that my family did not have to buy the presents that weren’t picked up this year.”
Glacier View Lodge was the final stop of her tour, having made deliveries to the Comox Valley Seniors Village and Cumberland Lodge on Sunday.
“This is the fun part,” Brosko said, as she unloaded her father’s van at Glacier View Lodge Monday morning. “It’s amazing every year, and the more I do it, the more I get to know some of the seniors who have been here a little while, and get to meet some of the new ones. They all just light up. They are so happy and it’s great, because it’s not something they were expecting. A lot of them get really excited because now they know the Valley is thinking of them at Christmas.”
This was the fourth year of Brokso’s Adopt-A-Grandparent program, and she said this was the most successful year yet.
“It’s always really exciting to see the reception this project gets,” she said. “The Comox Valley really goes above and beyond.”
“We are so grateful that people in the community care so much about seniors and will go out of their way to bring cheer to people,” said Liz Friss, GVL director of resident lifestyle and community programs.
Cathy Browne has lived at Glacier View Lodge for four-and-a-half years and said this program brings a lot of joy to all the GVL residents.
“I’ve been flabbergasted each year,” she said. “It always surprises us. It’s wonderful. My husband and I only have each other – we have no other family – so this is a real treat. There are so many people who are so touched by this; it is really heartwarming that people should think of us.”
Brosko said Sure Copy Courtenay was a big help this year.
“They made all the labels this year and it was really great not having to hand-write all those labels,” she said.