Ramona Poole is known as ISF’s Human Resources Coordinator, as well as our resident meatball chef. But to the youth at her church, she is their advisor, program coordinator, and their choir assistant. Ramona dedicates her free time every 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month to teach and assist with the youth group at Mt. Bethlehem P.B. Church in Tallahassee.
In 2012, Ramona and her youth group began a project to collect and recycle used Christmas cards. This isn’t typical recycling. The purpose of collecting these Christmas cards was to repurpose them into ornaments to distribute to nursing homes in the Tallahassee community. The ornaments are created from the face of the card. The decorative half is trimmed and embellished. The children sign the back of the ornament with heart-felt messages, wishing the recipients a Merry Christmas. Colorful, silky ribbon is attached and the refurbished ornaments are then ready to be given to their receivers at homes like Seven Hills nursing home. Last year, Ramona and her youth group donated 160 card ornaments.
This year, Ramona has set the goal to donate these card ornaments to 3 nursing homes within the area. Ramona and the kids have faith that all 480 recipients will be able to receive an ornament of their own. They only have 256 cards to go, already surpassing the amount they collected last year. “I’m confident that more cards will come in,” Ramona says. “We really want to touch as many lives as possible.”
In addition to the ornaments, this past Christmas the choir was invited to sing at the Miracle Hill nursing home. At 10:00 a.m., 15 choir members volunteered their Christmas morning to sing songs such as “Silent Night” and “May be the Last Time, I don’t Know.”
“I am so proud of our kids and the work that they are doing to help us put a smile on a face and touch the lives of those who are often forgotten,” Ramona says.
Donations are ongoing. If you wish to donate, or find more ways to get involved with the youth or at Mt. Bethlehem P.B. Church, please contact Ramona at firstname.lastname@example.org.