LUBBOCK, Texas — For a little less than a week, Emily Koontz has been collecting gifts for people living in nursing homes. Amid growing coronavirus concerns, people are no longer allowed to visit their loved ones.
“I drive by this nursing home a lot and I just thought… I feel vulnerable in this season and I’m sure the elderly are feeling that as well,” Koontz said.
During such difficult times, Koontz said she had to do something to help.
“I called up there and I just asked them–it was a little bit awkward–I was like ‘hi I was just calling to find out if there’s anything you guys need,'” Koontz said.
She then began conducting her own drive out of her home. The gifts are a way to bring smiles to the most vulnerable of people, who are living in nursing homes.
“I found out that the residents there actually quarantined to their room,” Koontz said. “I just want them to feel seen, to feel remembered and thought of, and that we care enough to reach out and to acknowledge what they’re going through.”
Each gift is one from the heart, including hand-written notes from children, to books and puzzles.
“If you see a need, you don’t have to wait for somebody else to fill that need,” Koontz said. “If you feel something in your heart–and for me if the Lord is telling you to do something, to say yes to that.”
Koontz said she has received so much support from friends and members of the community, she had to expand the project beyond herself.
“Love Lubbock is a outreach ministry of Trinity Church,” Koontz said.
Because as the community goes through the unknown, Koontz said it is kindness that will guide them.
“The Lubbock community is ready to give. I think they’re generous. I think they’re kind,” Koontz said.
Koontz added people who would like to make a donation are asked to drop off items to Trinity Church. She said they have collected enough items to deliver to nursing homes all over the city.
For more information on Love Lubbock and drop-off times visit their website.