This woman spends her free time helping seniors have better days.

People in her neighborhood know Pat as the woman who always has a flower in her hair and a warm smile on her face.

More often than not, you can find her walking around her local building complex for low-income seniors in Washington, D.C. laden with supplies for them.

"She’s had a huge impact on the seniors in her community," says the manager of the complex. "She just wants to help people."


But Pat isn't the only one offering her services to low-income seniors. She's part of a nonprofit called Sarah's Circle, which assists low-income senior women (as well as homeless women and those seeking refuge) who might be having a hard time making ends meet.

Pat and Ms Gamble, one of the seniors she helps out. All photos via Upworthy.

"I try to help as many seniors as I can because I know it’s very necessary," explains Pat. "It’s very difficult when your income is very low, and you have to stretch it for food, medicines, and transportation."

So she has a daily routine of going around to seniors in her community and asking if she can any run errands for them. Just by doing that, she's developed special relationships with many.

"For the last five or six years or so, she’s been bringing me books from the library, and we’ve had a strong bond ever since then," says Ms. Gamble, one of the seniors Pat helps.

She's so much more than just a nice woman who runs errands — to some, she's become as important as family.

"Without her, I don’t know what I'd do," says Martha. "She’s just like a daughter to me. She’ll do anything for anybody. If you’re down, she’ll perk you up."

Martha (left) and Pat (right).

The unfortunate reality is elderly people often continue to deteriorate over time, mentally and physically. And if they're living on a scant budget, it can become harder and harder to afford necessities, like medications and healthy food. They may also need assistance just to get simple, daily chores done, and if they're not quite ready for an aide, or at least not a full-time one, it can leave them at a major disadvantage when they're on their own.

Pat and other volunteers like her at Sarah's Circle do what they can to help fill in the gaps, and advocate for seniors when they can't.

“We need people speaking out for seniors who are only trying to live just like everyone else," says Pat.

But it's less about a greater agenda for Pat — she mostly just wants to brighten peoples' days, and help them keep moving forward. That's what being kind means to her — giving a bit of yourself to others to make their lives a bit better.

It's really the best advice anyone could offer.

"Try to put a smile on someone’s face everyday."

Learn more about Pat and Sarah's Circle in the video below:

lop
More
True
Truvia
via bfmamatalk / facebook

Where did we go wrong as a society to make women feel uncomfortable about breastfeeding in public?

No one should feel they have the right to tell a woman when, where, and how she can breastfeed. The stigma should be placed on those who have the nerve to tell a woman feeding her child to "Cover up" or to ask "Where's your modesty?"

Breasts were made to feed babies. Yes, they also have a sexual function but anyone who has the maturity of a sixth grader knows the difference between a sexual act and feeding a child.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Instagram / JLo

The Me Too movement has shed light on just how many actresses have been placed in positions that make them feel uncomfortable. Abuse of power has been all too commonplace. Some actresses have been coerced into doing something that made them uncomfortable because they felt they couldn't say no to the director. And it's not always as flagrant as Louis C.K. masturbating in front of an up-and-coming comedian, or Harvey Weinstein forcing himself on actresses in hotel rooms.

But it's important to remember that you can always firmly put your foot down and say no. While speaking at The Hollywood Reporter's annual Actress Roundtable, Jennifer Lopez opened up about her experiences with a director who behaved inappropriately. Laura Dern, Awkwafina, Scarlett Johansson, Lupita Nyong'o, and Renee Zellweger were also at the roundtable.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Life for a shelter dog, even if it's a comfortable shelter administered by the ASPCA with as many amenities as can be afforded, is still not the same as having the comfort and safety of a forever home. Professional violinist Martin Agee knows that and that's why he volunteers himself and his instrument to help.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Courtesy of Macy's

In many ways, 18-year-old Idaho native, Hank Cazier, is like any other teenager you've met. He loves chocolate, pop music, and playing games with his family. He has lofty dreams of modeling for a major clothing company one day. But one thing that sets him apart may also jeopardize his future is his recent battle against a brain tumor.

Cazier was diagnosed in 2015. When he had surgery to remove the tumor, he received trauma to his brain and lost some of his motor functionality. He's been in physical, occupational, and speech therapy ever since. The experience impacted Cazier's confidence and self-esteem, so he's been looking for a way to build himself back up again.

"I wanted to do something that helped me look forward to the future," he says.

Enter Make-A-Wish, a nonprofit organization that grants wishes for children battling critical illnesses, providing them a chance to make the impossible possible. The organization partnered with Macy's to raise awareness and help make those wishes a reality. The hope is that the "wish effect" will improve their quality of life and empower them with the strength they need to overcome these illnesses and look towards the future. That was a particularly big deal for Cazier, who had been feeling like so many of his wishes weren't going to be possible because of his critical illness.

"In the beginning, it was hard to accept that it would be improbable for me to accomplish my previous goals because my illness took away so many of my physical abilities," says Cazier. His wish of becoming a model also seemed out of reach.

But Macy's and Make-A-Wish didn't see it like that. Once they learned about Cazier's wish, they knew he had to make it come true by inviting him to be part of the magical Macy's holiday shoot in New York.

Courtesy of Macy's

Make-A-Wish can't fulfill children's wishes without the generosity of donors and partners like Macy's. In fact, since 2003, Macy's has given more than $122 million to Make-A-Wish and impacted the lives of more than 2.9 million people.

Cazier's wish experience was beyond what he could've imagined, and it filled him with so much joy and confidence. "It is like waking up and discovering that you have super powers. It feels amazing!" he exclaims.

One of the best parts about the day for him was the kindness everyone who helped make it happen showed him.

"The employees of Macy's and Make-A-Wish made me feel welcome, warm, and cared for," he says. "I am truly grateful that even though they were busy doing their jobs, they were able to show kindness and compassion towards me in all of the little details."

He also got to spend part of the shoot outdoors, which, as someone who loves climbing, hiking, and scuba-diving but has trouble doing those activities now, was very welcome.

Courtesy of Macy's

Overall, Cazier feels he grew a lot during his modeling wish and is now emboldened to work towards a better quality of life. "I want to acquire skills that help me continue to improve in these circumstances," he says.

You can change the lives of more kids like Cazier just by writing a letter to Santa and dropping it in the big red letterbox at Macy's (you can also write and submit one online). For every letter received before Dec. 24, 2019, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million. By writing a letter to Santa, you can help a child replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy, and anxiety with hope.

Believe
True
Macy's