On Valentine’s Day, the Society of American Florists’ staff brought roses and smiles to nearly 200 seniors in two assisted living communities in Alexandria, Virginia. SAF staff were among the 500 “Cupid Crew” volunteers for 75 events nationwide delivering 10,000 roses to senior citizens on Valentine’s Day through the national wish-granting organization Wish of a Lifetime.
“SAF got involved because the effort beautifully illustrates the research we conducted with Rutgers University regarding senior citizens and flowers,” said Jennifer Sparks, SAF’s vice president of marketing.
The Flowers & Seniors Study demonstrates that flowers ease depression, inspire social networking and refresh memory as people age.
“Upon receiving roses from us, their eyes lit up and many seemed genuinely appreciative of our gesture of compassion,” Sparks said. “As a staff, it was nice to ‘play cupid’ and experience firsthand the overwhelming positive benefits of a gift of flowers.”
Sparks noted that the roses helped to open communication and spur more lively conversation. “It made a difference in their day,” she added.
Wish of Lifetime’s Cupid Crew program started in Denver four years ago and has expanded nationally thanks to the organization Random Acts, a volunteer-led nonprofit dedicated to inspiring people of all ages to perform acts of kindness around the world. The organizations partner with local florists to source the roses.