An egg-stra special gift – Duquesne pharmacy students make Easter baskets for the elderly

Alicia Dye | staff writer. Duquesne's American Society of Consultant Pharmacists made Easter baskets for residents at the Haven Convalescent Home in New Castle.

Alicia Dye | Staff Writer

April 7, 2022

While most people think of wicker Easter baskets filled with candy during Easter season, American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP) made paper bunny Easter baskets, and filled them with fuzzy socks, self care items and goodies during their Easter baskets event. 

On Sunday, April 3, ASCP members and other pharmacy students gathered in the NiteSpot to paint picture frames and create Easter baskets for residents of the Haven Convalescent Home in New Castle. 

ASCP plays bingo with the residents there every month, and April will be their last bingo visit this semester. 

“We play bingo with them every month and bring some prizes, but this month we wanted it to be extra special,” said Megan Stocklas, ASCP president and fifth-year pharmacy student. 

“While we always have prizes, we wanted everyone to get something, especially since this is our last visit there this semester,” Stocklas said.

Before creating the Easter baskets, students painted more than 24 picture frames for the residents. The residents will be gifted a photo of the members of ASCP that they can put in the picture frame, if they choose. 

Afterward, students created the paper Easter bunny baskets and filled them with all types of fun items. While candy was included, so were mini rabbit plushies, lotion, activity books, fuzzy socks and bunny pens. Students also wrote Easter cards and included them in the baskets. 

“It’s always been a joy to interact with them, but even more now because we’re able to actually see them,” Stocklas said. “During Covid, we weren’t allowed there, so there were two years of having no interaction with them.”

The ASCP members looked forward to coming to this last bingo outing at the end of April, right after Easter break, and many discussed how they want to help older adults in their future career. “I love knowing we are giving back to them,” said Lysandra Ospino, ASCP service coordinator. 

“It’s all about building relationships with them, and I love it. They radiate so much joy when we come, and that’s what I love.”

“Working with them is my favorite part of ASCP. It’s so nice to see how happy they get when we work with them,” said Gabrielle Shearer, ASCP secretary. 

While this is ASCP’s last event of the semester, pharmacy students are encouraged to join them next semester for service to the nursing home. 

“We’ve painted flower pots for them, door tags, etc. We always try to switch up during the semesters, and they love getting gifts from us,” Stocklas said. “It puts a smile on their face, and in turn, a smile on my face too.”