Be a Santa to a Senior collects, wraps and delivers holiday gifts to seniors in need.

Program: Be a Santa to a Senior

Who runs it: Home Instead Senior Care, a company that provides non-medical, in-home services for seniors

“We help out with the personal activities of daily living,” said Michelle Brunell, owner of the Home Instead Senior Care franchise that serves Eastern Jackson County and Cass County.

What’s it about: Gifts for seniors in need are collected, wrapped and delivered.

“This is our outreach program,” Brunell said.

Who is helped: Residents of facilities in Blue Springs and Independence such as the Rehabilitation Center of Independence, The Groves, Glendale at the Mansion, Maywood Terrace Living Center, Monterey Park, Carmel Hills, Golden Living Center, Shangri-La Rehab & Senior Living and St. Mary’s Manor, plus other area facilities.

How it works: Christmas trees are up at two sites, The Living Stone at 231 S.E. Main St. in downtown Lee’s Summit and Academy Bank inside the Lee’s Summit Walmart on Missouri 291. Ornaments with first names of seniors and the gifts they have requested – typically things such as slippers, socks and soap – are on the trees.

“So far we’ve gotten approximately 400 gift requests,” Brunell said.

Those who want to help out take an ornament, buy the gift and turn it in (unwrapped, please). The trees will be up through Dec. 12. Then wrapping parties are held – the public is invited – and the gifts are delivered Dec. 13-16. The Independence Police Department and Alpha Phi Omega, a service fraternity in Independence, plan to help wrap gifts, and one of the half dozen wrapping parties will be at a Blue Springs elementary school.

“We also have a Santa helping,” Brunell said.

How can I help: Go to