Members of the NEOMED chapter of the national pharmaceutical fraternity Kappa Psi made their fingers fly on Thursday, Dec. 8, taking just 90 minutes to create 20 child-sized tie-blankets cheerfully printed with farm animals, polar bears, penguins and more. Named after the lovable, blanket-toting Peanuts character, Project Linus is a non-profit organization that has a two-fold mission: first, to provide love and a sense of security to children who are seriously ill, traumatized or otherwise in need of comfort by giving them a new, handmade blanket or afghan; and second, to create a fun service activity in which volunteers, called “blanketeers,” can participate.
“The most popular blankets to make are fleece-tied, quilted, crocheted and knitted,” said Sue Bruce, Pharm.D., associate dean for pharmacy education and interprofessional studies and chair and professor of pharmacy practice at NEOMED, who in her spare time serves as the Project Linus chapter coordinator for Greater Cleveland.
A longtime crafter, Dr. Bruce became involved when she wanted to donate extra blankets she had made. When her local chapter closed, she stepped up to become the new coordinator for Lake, Portage and Geauga counties, as well as parts of Cuyahoga and Summit County. In her new role, she collects blankets and donates them to local hospitals for children who are medically in need.
Dr. Bruce says that blanket donations of any size are gratefully accepted, as long as they are child-friendly, smoke-free, new, handmade and washable. To learn more about becoming a blanketeer, go to projectlinus.org.