By Sarah Wright
SYRACUSE — What started as a unique way to recognize local 2020 graduates who have had major milestones derailed by COVID-19 has ballooned to include students from all over northern and central Indiana.
Travis Davidson, owner of Davidson Auto Deals in Syracuse, has been blown away by how quickly the public Facebook group he launched has grown.
“I wanted to find a way to recognize local seniors who are missing so many events,” he explained, noting when the group was started it was centered on school districts in Kosciusko, Elkhart, Fulton and Noble counties. “It’s grown outside the area.”
Launched the evening of Wednesday, April 15, the North Central Indiana Adopt a Senior 2020 Facebook group has already attained over 400 members as of Thursday, April 16, and was fast approaching 500.
A sea of 2020 graduates’ photos — from the local area to more distant communities like Lafayette, Plymouth and Triton — dominate the group’s discussion feed, waiting for “adoption.” Each entry includes a short biography about the graduate and their plans for the future. While intended for high school graduates, Davidson said some 2020 college graduates have also been included and that’s fine.
Group members can adopt one senior or more if they so choose.
From there, the group’s about section advises, “Send a letter, card, gift, gift card, snack, anything to warm their hearts and remind them we’re all rooting for them. It’s a sad time with cancelled proms and graduations cancelled or postponed. Let’s spread some love!”
Davidson explained the group serves as a bridge to connect seniors and community members. Once an adoption occurs, the two parties get in contact and go from there.
Adoption posts have been made by parents, grandparents, other family members, friends or even the graduates themselves. Posters are only asked to remove “not adopted” from the post once they have been.
In the future, Davidson hopes to use the group to gift seniors through his business, though he hasn’t finalized all of the details yet.
Given the response, Davidson said, “I’m kind of curious to see where it goes.”
The Facebook group can be found at www.facebook.com/groups/2470445569933697.