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Adopting An Elder

Adopting an ElderThe Adopt-A-Native Elder Program was established to build bridges between cultures and between individuals through the native tradition of adoption. Within the program, adoption may not mean a lifelong commitment, but sponsors and their Elders may develop special friendships that last a lifetime.

Your Responsibilities when Adopting an Elder

Food boxes in a row Your responsibility when you adopt an Elder is to provide Rainbow Food Boxes for your Elder twice a year, for delivery during our spring and fall foodruns. We also hope that you will consider providing additional items your Elder needs, if you are able to do so.

We ask you to provide Rainbow Food Boxes for your Elder semi-annually because ensuring that the Elders have food is the primary purpose of adoption. You can also purchase food certificates that may be sent to your Elder at any time during the year or, if you would like, on a monthly basis. Rainbow Boxes and food certificates are gifts that sustain the Elders.

As part of the adoption process, you will receive a subscription to our newsletter for one year. We strongly encourage you to continue subscribing to the newsletter to learn about the Elders' needs throughout the year, new options for supporting your Elder, and ANE's on-going activities and special events.

Elder and boxes Once you adopt an Elder, we will send you an information sheet on your new Elder. This sheet includes the Elder's mailing address and any needs, beyond food, the Elder has identified.

As soon as you receive your Elder Adoption Sheet, please mail a letter to your Elder to introduce yourself. If you wish, you may order a food certificate when you adopt your Elder to enclose with your introductory letter.

Please note that this is not a pen-pal type of adoption. Most of the Elders live traditionally and, as such, they typically do not read, write or speak English. Some of the Elders have family members who can write on their behalf, but carefully consider the basic premise upon which all program activities are founded, the Giveaway Circle, and review the Frequently Asked Questions section before you decide to adopt an Elder.

Although the Elders may not express their appreciation in words, they feel gratitude for your generosity in their hearts.

Other Options for Supporting Elders

Many people would like to support the Elders but, for one reason or another, prefer not to commit to an individual Elder. The Program has a variety of ways that you can support the Elders.

To make a gift in support of any of these programs, please visit the Donations Page.