Please join us in spreading kindness this year by sharing notes of encouragement with our seniors affected by social isolation.  In partnership with the City of Salem, Salem Housing Authority, Essex County Community Foundation, and Salem Five, Root will prepare and deliver meals for senior residents at Salem Housing Authority this winter season. To help “garnish” these meals, we are asking individuals to share notes of well-wishes, art-work, or other encouragement for our elderly neighbors. For the initial distribution, Root will collect letters through Friday, December 11th and will begin distributing the letters with each senior meal starting the week of December 18th (until all the notes have been delivered!).

All Root senior meals will be prepared by graduates of Root’s youth culinary training program – creating employment hours for area young adults AND helping to address food insecurity for our neighbors! The “garnish” notes will be provided by you!

Letters can be submitted in the following ways:

  • You can drop off your notes in-person, Monday to Friday, or mailed to Root, December 1 – December 11, 2020. Root is located in Shetland Park at 35 Congress Street, suite 350 (building 2), Salem, MA 01970.
  • Thanks to the Salem Public Library, you can also submit a note electronically through the following SPL webpage: https://www.salempl.org/notes-of-encouragement/ (submissions will be printed and Root will deliver the notes with meals during December).

Senior Letter Guidelines:
1. Letters must be legible (large print) and handwritten (or sent via email). No worries if you’re not artistic– it is the thought that counts!

2. Avoid religion (and politics!), if possible. Your letter should resonate with anyone.

3. Exclude the date (day, month, and year).

4. Embrace creativity! Recipients love it when the letters are personal. We encourage you to make your letters colorful and fun– photos, crosswords, poems, and drawings are great!

5. Be kind & thoughtful. This is a one-way letter exchange, so you will not receive a letter back. Receiving nothing in return is part of the beauty of your act of kindness, and recipients aren’t burdened by feeling obligated or unable to respond.

6. Envelope your letters if you can! It’s so much nicer to receive an enveloped card. If you’re sending more than one letter, leave your enveloped letters unsealed and unstamped and send them in a larger envelope or box.

7. Share your act of kindness! Tag us at #feedingcommunity, #garnishforgood

8. Send us your letters by Friday, December 11th! For this first round of letters for our senior neighbors, please drop off your letter at one of the following locations, OR you’d like to send a note via the Salem Public Library, please go to https://www.salempl.org/notes-of-encouragement/ to submit your letter online for the SPL to print out and share directly with Root.

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