Santa inspires residents at Calgary senior’s centre
Published Wednesday, December 23, 2015 2:09PM MST
A man who lives in a Calgary senior’s centre is sharing his Christmas cheer with other residents and is our Inspiring Albertan this week.
Loneliness and isolation are a big problem for many seniors at this time of year but Allen and Harlene Braden are taking the time to change that.
The couple resides in a Silvera for Seniors complex in Bridgeland and each year they reprise the roles of Mr. and Mrs. Clause to cheer up others.
“It happened about five years ago when we moved in here. They were all discussing Christmas and Santa Claus came up and took one look at me and said, you got the physical attributes, you're Santa Claus and I’ve been Santa Claus ever since,” said Allen.
The Bradens hand out Christmas goodies to the residents and some even sit on Santa’s knee, like they did when they were kids.
“We are doing more living in here than we have for many years because we're around so many people that are, you know, uplifting people,” said Harlene.
Silvana Saccomani is the communications director at the facility and says it’s wonderful to see the seniors take charges of their social activities to keep busy.
“A recent study has shown that loneliness and social isolation actually has a very negative impact on the health and well-being of seniors,” said Saccomani.
For what he does to keep the Christmas spirit alive for seniors, Allen Braden is our Christmas week inspiring Albertan, with assistance from Harlene.
(With files from Darrel Janz)