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Megan Yates '23

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Megan Yates is an Occupational Therapy major who has recently become interested in working with older adults. This led her to declare a minor in Aging Studies at Ithaca College where she is eager to further her understanding of the aging experience. She hopes to combine her knowledge from her major and minor to one day work as an occupational therapist serving the older adult population.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, she knew feelings of social isolation extended to all individuals, but especially older adults. After speaking with several older adults via Zoom in her courses, Megan felt inspired to do something that would remind older adults that they are not alone during this challenging time. She contacted a local nursing home in her hometown of Bristol, Connecticut to find out how many residents lived there. She then created 80 cards for the residents. She decorated the outside of cards with uplifting messages such as “You are loved and amazing” or “Wishing you a wonderful week.” Inside each card she added cheerful thoughts and messages that she hoped would brighten the day of the recipients. She knows the cards are not the same as an in-person visit but she hopes they brought a smile to residents and allowed them to feel some community support. When it is safe to do so, Megan plans to return to the local nursing home to volunteer and form bonds with the residents.