Thanks to a fantastic response to an appeal by staff at Heartlands Care & Nursing Home in Yardley, resident Lillian Greenway celebrated her 100th Birthday in style. On Saturday 13th February Lillian enjoyed a wonderful surprise party and received over 10,050 cards and 500 presents from all over the world. Customer Relations Manager, Stacey Debney, decided to step in after realising that Lillian had no close family to help her celebrate her milestone birthday.
Stacey put an appeal on the Shirley & Solihull Community Facebook page asking people to send in birthday cards and explaining her favourite colour is purple, and she loves anything Royal. Within twenty-four hours, hundreds of cards had started flooding into the home, many community organisations and local people have been in touch with gifts and messages of support. Stacey has appeared on various TV and Radio stations after the appeal caught the attention of the local media, as a result, their postman Gary delivered over 14 sacks of cards with daily deliveries of parcels and gifts.
“Our Lilian has received over ten thousand cards, five hundred gifts and mountains of balloons, flowers and cake! This has been an amazing and truly humbling experience and we couldn’t have done it without the support of our community”. Said Stacey “It is so heart-warming that through such an uncertain and difficult time, our community have come together to create the most amazing day for our special lady! Thank you to everyone who shared it, sent a card, a present, a video message and baked a cake and for just being lovely humans with huge hearts.”
Lillian grew up in Sheldon and was married to husband George for many years, she has lived at Heartlands Care & Nursing Home in Yardley for six years and says, “I’m very happy here, I love my friends, it is my home”. The team at Heartlands Care Home decorated the home with purple decorations and created a special chair reserved for Lillian. Dressed in a purple dress handmade by a local seamstress and wearing new purple slippers and scarf, Lillian arrived wondering what all the fuss was about. She was delighted to find that it was all for her and had a wonderful time looking at all her cards, gifts, balloons and flowers. Asked what her secret was to a long life, she said, “Lots of cups of tea, biscuits and a good man!”
“We would like to thank everyone who contributed to Lillian’s special day, from the firefighters who sang Happy Birthday to the people who filmed birthday messages and children who played musical instruments for her and sent her birthday messages, it’s been absolutely wonderful”. Said Home Manager, Margaret Richards. “People not only sent in gifts and cards for Lillian but for all our residents, we’ve had a fantastic day”.