Even under ordinary circumstances, the life of a nursing home resident can be filled with boredom and loneliness. However, during the coronavirus pandemic, it's been even worse, as family members and loved ones who would otherwise visit the residents can't go inside the building due to fears they might spread the virus to the vulnerable residents inside.
Jorja Bolla, an 11-year-old girl from the town of Beatrice, realized that when she's sad and lonely, her pony, Peanut, brings joy to her. So, she figured the animal might bring joy to residents cooped up in nursing homes.
Soon enough, Peanut, Jorja, and Jorja's younger sister, Journee, were turning up at area nursing homes, bringing the pony with them.
"We brushed him and braided his hair with some colored pipe cleaners," she said, noting that she had also put a unicorn horn on him, but he wasn't into it and he took it off.
Neither the young ladies nor the animal could go inside the building, of course, so the girls and the pony entertained the residents from the opposite side of their windows.
The entire scene was far from professional. Jorja would attempt to talk to the residents through the window, but neither Peanut nor Journee was having any of that.
"Peanut was acting up so he put on quite a show. And of course, my sister was dancing around," Jorja said.
Still, the visit was the highlight of the residents' day, and some followed the girls and the pony from window to window.
"They really wanted more than anything to pet him. I am hoping I can have them do more with him soon. He was a little cranky but after a while he got used to it and liked it," Jorja said.
Jorja is hoping that once the pandemic is over and the residents and Peanut are allowed to visit each other outside, her pony will be something of a therapy pony. She's currently working on a program that would give the residents the opportunity to groom, pet, and feed him.
Jorja's story is one of several stories of kids stepping up to the plate to do their part to help out during the coronavirus pandemic. For example, as previously reported by The Inquisitr, in Texas, a girl named Lexi Collins put her award-winning quilting skills to work to make face masks for front-line healthcare workers.