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About Us

Established in March of 2016, Bring Smiles to Seniors, Inc. is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that serves senior communities across the country. Our staff consists of volunteers who are dedicated to supporting seniors in nursing homes and assisted & independent living communities, as well as those that are homebound or participating in elderly nutrition programs.

Bring Smiles to Seniors also runs an extension of the program in Michigan. We are a completely unpaid volunteer-run organization that is currently staffed by six passionate individuals. 

Mission Statement

We strive to connect the circle of life by working with schools, civic organizations, employers and individuals to decorate cards for seniors in nursing homes, assisted & independent living communities, and those that are homebound or participating in elderly nutrition programs. Our team hopes to help younger generations understand the importance of remembering those who paved the way for us, while reminding seniors that they are cared for and loved. 

About Our Founder

Ron Tyson, our Founder, established this program in honor of his grandmother, Lola Mae, who suffered from dementia. She stayed in a nursing home until she passed away in Okeechobee, Florida in August of 2016. When he visited her, he noticed that many elderly residents did not have any visitors. Also, many did not receive gifts or cards from anyone. Because of this, Ron decided that he wanted to make a difference in the lives of seniors. He founded Bring Smiles to Seniors in March 2016.

Card Angel Donor Recognition

We call our card donors Card Angels because of the many smiles they bring to seniors across the country. We have four levels of recognition for individuals who have repeatedly donated their talent and cards to support our mission. While each and every card angel is important to the work that we do, these individuals have made extraordinary contributions to our program. Our designation of Star Angel Decorator are for those individuals who have decorated >3,000 cards for our program. These are our current card angel honorees:

Pink Star Diamond Card Angel (>10,000)

Lillian Abrams - Michigan

Paula Anderson - California

Rita Bezdicek - Florida

Jan DeJianne - New Jersey

Linda Hanzely - Minnesota

Marcia Homa - Washington

Alice Pompilio - Florida

Diamond Card Angel (>5,000 cards)

Linda Biese - Wisconsin

Christine Bittman - Texas

Tess DePalma - Florida

Joyce DiFalco - Michigan

Jencina Elliott - Kansas

Dana Jenkins - Washington

Maura Johnson - Florida

Joan Kinzig - Colorado

Nancy M. - New York

Sharon Massey - Texas

Christine Wheeler - New Jersey

Star Angel Decorator

Kim Allen - Wisconsin

Liz Beuhn - Ohio

Kristine Cimmy - Florida

Linda Haber - Indiana

Janice Spitko - Florida

Joyce Tietz - Minnesota

Cherryl Vargas - California

Bernice Wead - New York

Gold Card Angel (>2,500 cards)

Beth Arnold - Wisconsin

Janet Birdsall - Texas

Jill Boteler - Maryland

Joy Brewer - North Carolina

Vickie Deffries - Washington

Virginia DeLapp - Virginia

Dawn Duplak - Florida

Tina Galloway - Florida

Gaylene Gray - Washington

Amy Goossen - California

Sheila Logan - Florida

Lynn Miller - Michigan

Brenda Oathout - New York

Lori Palano - California

Becky Prohaska - North Carolina

Laurie Reeds - Ohio

Missy Saucerman - Colorado

Diane Wallace - Florida

Silver Card Angel (>1,000 cards)

Diane Andrade - California

Alma Bartolome-Billmayer

Jeanette Beisel - Texas

Deb Tietz Birkholm - Minnesota

Jo Blackford - Washington

Sharon Broussard - Georgia

Cheryl Cameron - Wyoming

Sonya Casteel - Florida

Carol Coneeny - New Jersey

Susie Cramer - Wisconsin

Laurie Duncan - Oregon

Lee Ernewein - New York

P.F. - North Carolina

Linda Gardner - Missouri

Shirley Gardner - Missouri

Jocelyn Glas - New Mexico

Terrie Hammonds - West Virginia

Lisa Harris - Illinois

Tracy Hawes - Michigan

Carol Hemmelgarn - Ohio

Ernie Hendrix - Georgia

Robin Hoff - Wisconsin

Ali Huggard - Utah

Ora Jacobson - Washington

Cindy Jaqua - Ohio

Debbie Jensen - Florida

Ruth Johnson - Washington

Theresa Kanitra - Indiana

Mary Kunzmann - New York

Sue Ladd - Ohio

Sara Lawson - Florida

Danielle LeFave - Florida

Cindy Leis - Colorado

Susan - Colorado

Timmie McErlean - Georgia

Elaine McCullough - Scotland

Cindee Naugle - Pennsylvania

Mary Ellen Norton - Florida

Carol & Steve Ralser - Arizona

Beth Richardson - Pennsylvania

Daphne Rogers - Florida

Kerry Roup - Florida

Denise Sabonaitis - Massachusetts

Joan Stramaglia - Florida

San Francisco Correspondence Co-op

Barbara Tether - Maryland

Barb Slager - Florida

Doreen Smith - Michigan

Sandra Snipes - South Carolina

Danielle Stockford - Michigan

Tracy Strodl - California

Jennifer Sutliff - Illinois

Pamela Tetreault - Missouri

Gail Thompson - Colorado

Lon Tomokiyo - Hawaii

Cheryl Yamashita - California

Kristine Warnke - Virginia

Debra Westermann - Michigan

Amanda Wollner - Michigan

The Benefits of Volunteering 

Getting Involved: Make This Year Your Family’s Year!

Amanda Henderson,

Did you know that volunteering is good for you? What’s more, engaging with a charitable organization offers benefits to the whole family. Here is how to make this a year that builds your family members as individuals and knits your family closer together as a unit.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Health benefits. Being involved with a charity and reaching out to help others provides benefits to your own well-being. In fact, according to some studies, there is increasing evidence volunteering is a boon to your health and improves our society on many levels. Those who engage as volunteers experience a reduced mortality rate, improved mental and physical functionality, and lowered risk for depression. Working with a charity decreases your stress levels and enhances your satisfaction with life, adding a sense of purpose to your days. Those who volunteer report increased happiness, improved self-esteem, and a bigger sense of control over life circumstances. It even appears the more time you spend volunteering, the greater your benefit.

Kids, too! Adults aren’t the only ones whose lives improve by doing things outside of themselves. Focus on the Family cites research that found children who volunteer enjoy better self-esteem, enhanced desire to learn, higher levels of motivation, and an improved moral compass. When the experience as a volunteer is positive, children learn that while the work may be challenging, it’s worthwhile and satisfying.

Ties that bind. Connecting with charities as a family offers special benefits. Since volunteering requires communication and teamwork, family members bond. Parents can also enjoy teachable moments that can be hard to come by in other circumstances, and actively demonstrate the value of compassion and generosity.

Responsibility. Children learn basic responsibility from following through on their commitment to a charity. They learn to show up when they say they will, honor their obligation to the best of their ability, and to be pleased with the results of their efforts.

Experience. Volunteering offers opportunities for your children to learn a good work ethic. Also, some experts point out children gain work experience, leadership skills, and networking opportunities. Children can even learn specific job skills which might benefit their future careers.

The power of “one.” Another important message children can gain from volunteering is the impact of one person’s efforts. KidsHealth explains that children see their efforts creating an impact and gain the empowering message that they can make a difference in the world.

Sacrifice and giving. Another great lesson children learn is the principle of sacrifice. They can see the giving of time and effort making a difference, and they can see the benefit when giving items as well. With that in mind, one suggestion is to declutter your home, gleaning gently used items to donate to a charity. Not only does this help a worthy cause, but reduces the amount of “stuff” in your home and helps you stay organized. Consider asking your children to select a special toy or two to give to a less fortunate child. It’s an opportunity for your youngster to learn the value of generosity when you have more than others have. Be sure to lead by example and donate something special of your own.

Community benefits. Engaging with a charitable organization strengthens communities. Agencies and services that use volunteers generally run on little or no income, and rely heavily on support from the efforts of individuals and groups committed to improving the local community.

Volunteering is a terrific way to enhance the well-being of you and your family members while serving your community. Making a charitable effort is not only good for your mental and physical health, it improves your family bond and teaches your children invaluable lessons. Make this your family’s year and spend time giving of yourselves!