Remember Linus from Peanuts? The little boy with his blankie to his ear and his thumb in his mouth? This character by Charles M. Schultz, the embodiment of well-known positive impact on young children of a comfort blanket or toy, became the mascot for Project Linus.
The organization states that it has two missions:
First, provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need through the gifts of new, handmade blankets and afghans, lovingly created by volunteer “blanketeers.”
Second, provide a rewarding and fun service opportunity for interested individuals and groups in local communities, for the benefit of children.
Rona Kleiman, one of my online Ravelry friends, who started the Project Linus program in Canada, recently visited Havergal College, an exclusive private girls school, to see what the 9th grade girls were making for Project Linus.
These are the hand sewn, paper-pieced quilt tops they were making.
"They have an art teacher who has a PHD in art education," Rona says. The art teacher, Dr. Miriam Davidson, who is head of the upper school art department as well as a teacher, started the quilt program five years ago and contacted Rona at Project Linus, because the girls were looking for a new place to donate. A relative of one of the girls had donated to Project Linus in the past, so the girl suggested the organization as a possible destination for the finished quilts.
When Rona arrived at the school, the girls were working on stone carvings. Rona says that they took her breath away. She was very impressed with the girls, too. "They were kind and funny and very smart. What a breath of fresh air," she says. Rona explained to the girls what Project Linus is all about. When she was finished, they were very excited about their donations.
Rona started Project Linus Canada 20 years ago and was the international coordinator of the organization across Canada, until two years ago when she stepped down from that position and now runs the Toronto chapter. "I got really burned out from all the desk work," Rona says. When she started the program she didn’t expect it to expand to such a degree. "Even the Toronto chapter is a big and busy chapter and requires a lot of work and running around, but I love the charity. It’s a part of me by now," she adds. There are now 40 chapters in Canada--something to be proud of.
I find the girls' quilts inspiring. Don't you? Even with hand-sewing and paper-piecing, these shapes are difficult to piece with this kind of precision.
For more information on Project Linus, especially how to get involved, contact--
Project Linus Canada: http://projectlinuscanada.org
Project Linus USA: https://www.projectlinus.org
Project Linus accepts knitted and crocheted blankets in addition to quilts. Check with them for requirements before making a blanket.
While I'm on vacation, I thought my readers might be interested in a valuable resource for children in need and a worthy place for quilters, knitters and crocheters to donate their efforts.