Pay It Forward: Project Linus makes blankets for sick and traumatized kids

Two years ago, Maryland mom Sara Gorfinkel decided to make blankets with her children and donate them to an organization called Project Linus, who then donates them to local shelters and hospitals. She was disappointed when she found the nearest chapter was over 30 minutes away.

Undeterred, she made the drive and delivered her finished blankets. After several weeks, her disappointment turned to excitement when the beneficiaries of the blankets sent a note thanking her and the other volunteers for their gift.

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Gorfinkel was so touched she contacted the national office for Project Linus and volunteered to start a chapter in Montgomery County. The national office put her in touch with Carol Lichtenstein, another Montgomery County resident, and together they started Project Linus right here in our area.

That was back in 2017 and since then the pair and their brigade of volunteers known as “blanketeers” have been able to make and donate 3,082 blankets to sick or traumatized babies, children and teens.

The way Project Linus works is volunteer organizations buy all the materials used to make the blankets. Project Linus provides templates to make the blankets and instructions.

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Their team picks up the finished blankets and delivers them to shelters, hospitals and to those in need.

Gorfinkel, long-time volunteer Hazel James and a few helpers joined the FOX 5 Pay It Forward crew in the Good Day DC Loft to demonstrate how easy and fun the blankets can be to make.

They say in most cases the fleece blankets only take 30 to 40 minutes to make.

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FOX 5 and Easterns Automotive Group teamed up to surprise Project Linus by donating 144 yards of fleece for blankets and more supplies to help make blankets.

If you know someone who should be featured on Pay It Forward, you can nominate them here. In your email, be sure to include who they are and why they deserve to be recognized.