ELKO — For children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and injuries, a hospital stay can be a terrifying experience for them and their family members.
Thanks to an organization created in 2007 called Ryan’s Case for Smiles, formerly ConKerr Cancer, young patients and their families around the globe have found comfort and support from colorful pillowcases given to both them and their family members that provide an emotional boost and a reminder that they are not defined by their illness.
More than 50,000 children in over 330 hospitals throughout North America each year are the recipients of these pillowcases sewn by volunteers and distributed through more than 120 chapters comprised of thousands of volunteers.
Thanks to the hard work of students in Elko High School’s Clothing 1 and 2 classes, a donation of 86 pillowcases to Ryan’s Case for Smiles is currently on its way to spread cheer to patients at Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center and Renown Health in Reno.
According to Elko High School Family and Consumer Science instructor Barbara Hereford, a large store of material led to a search for a project for the students to utilize the supply for a worthy cause. After reading about the Ryan’s Case for Smiles organization, the students had found their cause and were eager and excited to get to work on their project.
Clothing l students Karlie Allen and Darshay Souza both said they really enjoyed making the pillowcases.
“The project really helped me learn sewing techniques and inspired me to do a really good job on the pillowcases for the kids,” said Souza.
Allen added, “It was a really nice way to know that I was able to help kids in need.”
Donations of fabric and other sewing materials from the community are always welcome and greatly appreciated by the students. For more information on making a donation, contact Hereford at 738-3179.