“It has increased their mental well-being in this challenging time.”

Recognizing the toll that months of social distancing is taking on its residents, Victorian Senior Care facilities in North Carolina put out a call for pen pals to help ease their loneliness and isolation amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Administrators at one of the assisted living facilities in Cary were looking for ways to lift the resident's spirits a few weeks ago, when they came up with the idea to connect residents with pen pals. The staff helped each resident make a poster board with their name and something they’re interested in and pose for a photo for Facebook.

The idea took off. In the first week alone, the post raked in more than 314,000 shares.

The success of the initiative inspired similar programs at Victorian Senior Care’s 13 other facilities. Now all of their residents can experience the joy of a pen pal.

Meredith Seals, the chief operating officer for Victorian Senior Care, told Southern Living sister site Better Homes & Gardens, that the staff and residents are blown away by the amount of support they’ve received. “It has been mentally strenuous on them to not be able to see their families or go out into the community. We never imagined it would get this big. We are overwhelmed with the love that we have received from all around the world,” she said.  “It has increased their mental well-being in this challenging time.”

To write to a resident, click through the images on the company’s website until you find someone you want to connect with.

If you are having trouble deciding on a particular resident, you can send a letter to Victorian Senior Care’s main office. Administrators will match your letter based on the needs of each community and resident.

Send your letter to the main office with the following address:

4270 Heath Dairy Road

Randleman, NC, 27317

Atten: VSCPenPals

Let’s get writing!