Five years ago AngelWorx, a program that is part of Generations services for older adults in Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Knox, Martin, and Pike counties, started its Build-A-Basket project. The project helps provide some of the basic needs of clients in the Generations program, as well as provide some holiday cheer. The filled baskets are provided by individuals, schools, churches and other organizations. Last year, over 700 baskets were turned in and delivered to individuals in need.
“The items we suggest to be put in the baskets are simple and inexpensive every day items,” said Kim Fields, Daviess and Martin County AngelWorx Coordinator. “Many of the items can be purchased for a dollar or two.”
Fields said she has seen the necessities arranged in everything from laundry baskets and plastic totes to wastebaskets, hampers and decorated cardboard boxes.
“Many of the baskets have a creative touch with cards and crafts in them and are festively decorated,” said Fields who enjoys delivering and creating the special baskets. “The people who make up the baskets are usually so excited about doing this project,” Fields said.
While the project is rewarding for both those who put baskets together and those who receive the baskets, Fields believes the most rewarding part of the experience has been delivering the baskets.
“Personally delivering the baskets to the elderly and disabled in our community has been the most rewarding. One would never suspect how much joy it brings someone,” said Fields.
In the past some of the recipients of the baskets have been overcome with emotion.
“I was delivering a basket for a teacher and her classroom who volunteered for him through AngelWorx,” said Fields. “I was supposed to try to get a picture of him with the basket to take back to the class but I didn’t. The man was so overcome that he cried. He told me no one had ever done anything like that for him before and he couldn’t believe the kids had it for him. ‘It (the basket) is the only gift I will receive,’ he told me,” said Fields who ended up with mascara in eyes from crying after hearing the man’s story.