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Be a Santa to a Senior this holiday season

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The hustle and bustle of Christmas shoppers are taking over many stores as the holidays are inching closer.

Donna Maniaci is one of those shoppers, but unlike many others Maniaci is shopping for someone she's never met.

"It makes me feel very warm inside knowing that I'm doing a service for my community and the older generation," said Maniaci.

For the past three years, Maniaci has been a Santa to a senior. This is a program hosted by Home Instead Senior Care.

"It may be the only gift, it may be the only card, it may be the only uplifting spirit that they receive all year," said Home Instead Senior Care Director of Community Relations Cathy Majkowski.

Trees are set-up in participating stores decorated with ornaments with the name of a senior and gift ideas written on it.

"I usually pick somebody that I can relate to, so I'm drawn to that ornament that just calls me over there," said Maniaci.

Those donating gifts can purchase the items and leave them in the barrel next to the Christmas tree unwrapped with the ornament attached. 1,000 seniors in the Milwaukee area will receive gifts this year, including RoseMarie Peck who says she's touched by this gesture.

"Wonderful, cheerful, and happiness, and joyful, I just can't explain it," said Peck.

The smile on Peck's face is a heartwarming reminder that it's always better to give then to receive.

Home Instead Senior Care will be collecting the gifts for seniors until December 6th. The gifts will be distributed to the seniors mid December. To find a participating store close to you CLICK HERE.

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