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Pen pal program at senior living community aims to connect residents, kids during social distancing

Highland Ridge Senior Living sits in Williamsburg and is looking for pen pals for its residents during covid-19 social distancing on Wednesday, April 1st, 2020. (AARON HOSMAN//KCRG)
Highland Ridge Senior Living sits in Williamsburg and is looking for pen pals for its residents during covid-19 social distancing on Wednesday, April 1st, 2020. (AARON HOSMAN//KCRG)(KCRG)
Published: Apr. 1, 2020 at 4:52 PM CDT
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An eastern Iowa senior living center is hoping to connect its residents and the community during social distancing.

Highland Ridge Senior Living Community in Williamsburg wants the community’s help, specifically kids, in starting a pen pal program.

Visitation is currently limited for the living community’s 180 residents and caregivers said something like a pen pal could help boost resident morale.

One employee said things like FaceTime and technology are great, but she wants kids and seniors to connect by sending letters, pictures, and artwork. The center’s housing counselor says the pen pal program can help kids practice their writing at the same time.

"I’ve been kind of brainstorming and once we get out of all of this, it would be great to have everyone come out and actually met face-to-face because I could see this could be a good long-term relationship and maybe building some of these age gaps," Ashley Rathjen said.

Anyone interested in participating can send mail to:

Ashley Rathjen

100 Village View Circle

Williamsburg, Iowa, 52361

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