A network of Blanket Angels connecting Florida, Westerville, Cincinnati and Chicago made it happen.
Members of Meeting Planners International from Ohio and Kentucky made 200 fleece blankets at a recent educational conference in Cincinnati. The project was organized by Peggy, a conference participant who is the Chicago-based Midwest Sales Director for a West Palm Beach, FL tourism company.
Peggy learned about MVOB through an event held in West Palm Beach that included a blanket-making project. The experience inspired her to become an MVOB advocate.
At the Cincinnati event, Peggy hosted an exhibit booth where attendees learned about MVOB and made blankets. To make it happen, she connected with three local Blanket Angels who picked up the fleece in Westerville and delivered it in Cincinnati, collected the finished blankets after the event, and donated them in Cincinnati.
Peggy will take the leftover fleece to an industry event in Chicago where new blanket angels will make blankets that she will donate in Chicago, extending MVOB's mission even farther, to more children in foster care.
As of December 1, 2019, there were 16,388 children in care in Ohio, from newborn babies to youth 18 years old. There were 155,488 participants in open child abuse and neglect cases. The counties with the largest numbers in both categories are Cuyahoga, Franklin and Hamilton.
From Ohio Department of Job and Family Services Data Dashboard, 12/1/19
Even though we are facing disturbing foster care statistics that highlight the urgent need we try to meet, we can lighten our serious work with a little fun with our blanket angels. On Valentine’s Day, we took photos of the angels who happened to deliver blankets – and were willing to wear red, heart-shaped sparkly glasses for a photo!
Because kids in foster care always need to see and feel LOVE as they live through the foster care process, there is always need for more blankets. You can help; it’s fast and easy. Sponsor a no-sew fleece blanket kit for $10, online or in person.
We are blessed to have another partner in our mission to provide love and hope to children in foster care. Stitched Together, a family-run organization serving Central Ohio, was created to meet a need for kids entering the foster care system and give them a little hope during an uncertain time in their life.
Stitched Together wants to provide every kid entering foster care with their own Hope Case and something to call their own.
Hope Cases are backpacks filled with comfort items as well as essential items for children entering the foster care system. Hope cases ease their transition with something to call their own. Each Hope Case is packed with items specific to a certain age group.
Karie Griffin, Stitched Together’s founder, stopped in to meet us recently. We gave her a tour and some bags of blankets to include in the Hope Cases. She and her daughter are shown at left ready to go home with the blankets.
Karie is a foster parent in the process of adopting her foster son.
She told us, “As a foster parent, I witnessed children entering the system arrive with nothing or with minimal items stuffed in a trash bag. These items are often things the social worker or police scooped up off the floor and may or may not belong to the child. Stitched Together provides Hope Cases to children entering the system. Hope Cases are backpacks for all age ranges that contain both comfort items and essential items. These cases enable the child to have something to call their own and a little bit of hope in an uncertain time. We proudly serve the Central Ohio area.”
Email Karie Griffin: firstname.lastname@example.org
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