13 answers

Inexpensive Gift Ideas for Nursing Home Residents

Hello, I am at a loss and I know you guys can help me! Our church organizes volunteers for our sister church every year for Thanksgiving dinner. I am in charge of the crafts this year. As part of the craft, we make gift bags for nursing home residents. Well, this year they want to make bags for 500+ residents so I am in need of some inexpensive gift ideas! I've ordered the paper bags and a cute little craft (ornament) that the kids will decorate but what else can I put in the bag? I can't afford to spend a lot since I'm buying 500+ but I don't want it to be something that will just be tossed aside...help!

Also, if anyone wants to volunteer, (East Plano, TX) please let me know!

We are also doing a coat drive (gently used coats)...last year the line for the coats was as long as the food line!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Seniors love hard candy, it keeps their dry mouths moist. Lots of them love butterscotch, butter mints and even Good n Plenty licorice candy.

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

Seniors love hard candy, it keeps their dry mouths moist. Lots of them love butterscotch, butter mints and even Good n Plenty licorice candy.

2 moms found this helpful

What about a pair of fuzzy socks for the ladies and handkerchief for the men?

2 moms found this helpful

How about the cinnamon applesauce ornaments. They smell great and can be hung on a tree or on the wall. http://www.astorybooklife.com/recipes/cinnamon-applesauce...

They could go a long way with a large number of bags to prepare :)

2 moms found this helpful

Google CJs Butter. She makes THE yummiest chapsticks ever, like Lemon Cheesecake! I'm sure she'll give you a great price!

1 mom found this helpful

How about putting candy in each bag?

1 mom found this helpful

Hi M.,
Up until may I was a Life Enrichment Cordanator(Activities Director) at a very nice asst.living. Plus I have worked wit ht seniors for over 20 yrs.
1)..I would say keep it simple the folk don't have alot of space in some places.
2)..If you know the places that you will be packing for call the activies director and ask for suggestions and how many diabetics are living there from everyone and then take a couple of the most suggested things and do if they are doable.
3).. I always told my volunteers that it did'nt matter what they broght the folks REALLY just love to see the KIDS and the cards are enough. So don't go out of you way and buy tons of things.
4)..Have the kids sing some Christmas Carols while the make up small bags of hard candies. IMPORANT::: To ask if the are any diabetics and how many. If they can pass them out to them before the kids do so that they don't get the wrong bags. Or just ask if they can pass them out for you Have the bags labled differently!! So you cn tell them which is which for the diabetics.
5)..Someplace don't allow fresh baked goods from the out side of thier buildings. It has to do with the personal allergies and nutrional value for the folks daily diet. Small people have to be on a strict daily intake schdule. So I do recommend making any food like; cookies,candies,or fudge.ect.

Well I hope I helped
Don't over think it keep it simple. They like the simple things in live!

1 mom found this helpful

I would also suggest something to eat. Each resident will not have a lot of personal space anyway. To expect to give them something to keep is a little presumptuous.

Most things will get tossed, but a nice chocolate like Lindts truffles and a candy cane might be good.

1 mom found this helpful

How about checking around with some local salons to see if you could negotiate a salon day/grooming day type service (hair/nails for women, hair/facial hair for men)? If done as a donation the salon can write it off at the end of the tax year and they would get good PR points and advertising as well. Win-win-win. If you could work something out with a local salon you could print up individual certificates from your own computer and put that in the gift bag.

When I worked in a nursing home it was difficult for a lot of the residents to get out and about for these types of services. I once asked a few residents what would mean the most to them and (outside family) they responded that getting their hair and nails done made them feel pretty (from a woman) and important (from a man) again. Pretty and important sound pretty nice to me.

If that doesn't work maybe you could negotiate with a chain drug store (or dollar store) to purchase different lotions, perfumes, body washes, colognes, and the like in bulk (or get it as a donation *wink*wink*).

You are doing a good thing. Hope this helps! :-)

1 mom found this helpful

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