Community Connections: Project Linus
The Westchester-Rockland Chapter of Project Linus has provided thousands of blankets for Montefiore Nyack’s NICU and Pediatric patients. Although they couldn’t get together in person as a group, they didn’t let the pandemic stop them from their mission of providing a little security, warmth, and comfort to babies and children in need. Above and Beyond Creative Sewing, located in Nanuet, hosted virtual Project Linus meetings to help keep the group’s momentum going. Members worked individually to continue to create blankets and coordinated contactless pick-ups and deliveries to get blankets to those who needed them most. The Chapter’s Rockland County Coordinator, Ruth Wilson has led the efforts and managed the collection and delivery of donations in the county. “The volunteers are magicians, as far as I’m concerned,” said Ruth. “We call them blanketeers, and their personal mission is ‘I believe I should give back’.” And give back they do! The Westchester-Rockland Chapter of Project Linus has been in existence for over 20 years! In that time, they have donated over 20,000 blankets to hospitals, family shelters, ambulance corps, schools and more. Ruth herself has been delivering blankets to Montefiore Nyack for the past 15 years.
“We couldn’t do it without our fearless leader, Adele Shapiro who is the Coordinator for the entire Westchester-Rockland Chapter,” added Ruth. “She is the glue that has enabled us all to stick together through the past year-and-a-half.” Montefiore Nyack Foundation got to take part in a special day for the Chapter on October 4th, as they were able to come together again in person for the first time in 18 months. Our friends at Hotel Nyack generously provided the group with a space large enough to work together safely, not just for that one day but on a regular basis moving forward. It’s an example of community collaboration at its finest. Two new members joined the group that day, and they collected 62 blankets, which was just the beginning of their collection for the month of October. Project Linus is a national, volunteer, not-for-profit organization named after the blanket-toting character in Charles Schultz’ Peanuts cartoon strip. Project Linus gives a new handmade blanket to children who are in a hospital, have been in an accident, are suffering through the loss of a loved one, or are in foster care, homeless or in other challenging situations. Special thanks to Ruth Wilson and Adele Shapiro for their amazing leadership and continued support of Montefiore Nyack.