Stay the Course Light a Star

“When the world says “Give up,” hope whispers “Try it one more time.” ~Author Unknown

Our very good friends over in Mansfield Ohio, the wonderful children’s charity Friends Like Us, were hit back at the end of February with a devastating flood. Since we launched Layers of Love we have had a relationship with Friends Like Us. Mark and his wonderful children’s charity, were one of the first friends we communicated with through our social media efforts. Since our first tweets together over a year ago we have built a very strong friendship. What does Friends Like Us do? They are a nonprofit childhood cancer organization with a goal to help children who have been devastated by cancer through their treatments. With all the pain and heartache that can come with this disease, we want to leave a lasting impression of love and hope with them.

As we announced earlier this year we are working this year collecting child sized fleece blankets for children who are going through chemotherapy treatment to add to their Chemo Bear Packages. They have given many children and their families a great deal of hope by providing them with these packages to help them ease the pain and uncertainty of going through chemotherapy treatment. Friends Like Us, works tirelessly for children who have been diagnosed with cancer.

As devastating as the flood was and all the damage it brought to Friends Like Us, the damage hasn’t stopped there, not only did they lose a great deal personally, their charity took a big hit as well, it has been almost complete loss for them. They have been trying to recoup some of the losses with local agencies but haven’t had any luck through that venue to date. So they are doing what they can on their own. As Friends Like Us states on their website, “We did everything we could to keep the water out and as fast is it came in, we couldn’t keep it out. It was like a small river flowing and all we could do is run around to get things put up as fast as we could, but it was too late for a lot of it. We lost so much due to the damages caused from the water. We are working hard on the recovery process, but need so much help with repairs and financially. We just can’t do it on our own!!!” Friends Like Us lost a lot of Chemo Bears, medical supplies, sibling toys, many coloring books, books and lots of supplies. You can view some photos from the flood on their website.

We are asking today if you can help them in any way possible, no donation IS TOO SMALL, every bit counts, to get them back on their feet and running again so that their mission of providing children with their Chemo Bear Packages can go on, move forward and begin to continue again.

Friends Like Us has made it very easy to donate to their cause. Simply go to their website http://www.friendslikeus.org/ and click on the donations tab at the top of the page, you can also donate through your mobile device with their QR code by going here.

Thank you for your help, it is appreciated more than you will ever know.

 

Thank you to the wonderful charity of Friends Like Us for not only everything they have done for children and their families who have been devastated by cancer, but for everything they will continue to do well into the future.  Layers of Love is grateful not only for the fantastic work they do, but for their friendship.

 

“Stay the course, light a star, change the world where’er you are.” ~Richard Le Gallienne

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Providing Comfort and Warmth for Children

Today marks another beginning for Layers of Love. We are very proud and extremely happy to announce that as of today we are kicking off a brand new campaign!

As of today we will begin accepting homemade fleece blanket donations for children who are going through chemotherapy treatment.  Since I began Layers of Love, I have always known that working with children who have been diagnosed with cancer would become a reality.  Not only will we be helping provide comfort and warmth for children who are going through chemotherapy treatment but we are very excited to be working with the wonderful children’s charity Friends Like Us. As many of you will remember we worked with them last year as well.  I was so impressed with their work and what they are doing for children who have cancer that I wanted to be able to work with them again and help out in any way possible.

Friends Like Us provides Chemo Bear Packages for children who have cancer.  This Chemo Bear Package contains:

  • A bear
  • A Book- I’m a Kid Living with Cancer
  • An implantofix/port with tubing in a bears chest
  • A real stethoscope
  • Medical bag with accessories
  • Bears diagnoses report
  • Bear shirt
  • Chemo hat/bandanna
  • Friendship heart
  • A gift
  • Greeting Card
  • Birthday Surprise on child’s birthday
  • A music CD for the parents

With the help of your blanket donations to Layers of Love, we are very happy to add homemade fleece blankets to the Friends Like Us Chemo Bear Packages. Isn’t this a wonderful package for a child who has just been diagnosed with cancer?  We think it’s pretty fantastic.

You want to donate but don’t know where to start?

Donating is very easy!  Just take a look over at our sidebar right here on our blog.  For your convenience we have selected a few No Sew Fleece Blanket Kit patterns that we recommend from JoAnn’s Fabric and Craft Stores, and put the links there.  The donation process for child sized blankets is exactly the same as it works for the adult sized.  When you donate your blanket, you will still send it directly to us, and we will package it with our ribbon and tags and send it over to Friends Like Us.  If you are making a blanket yourself the measurements for the child sized blankets are slightly different from the adult requirement, the child sized blanket should measure 48″ x 60″. As always, if you don’t have time or don’t know how to put a blanket together all you have to do is ship it to us, we are very happy to be able to put it together for you.  If you are ordering a blanket directly from the links on our sidebar, you can have the blankets shipped from JoAnn’s right to us, just put our address in form when ordering.   You can find our address under the Contact Us tab above this post.  If you have any additional questions about donating to us, check out our FAQ tab, also above this post.

The best part of all of this is that not only will we be providing comfort and warmth for children now with the help of Friends Like Us, but we will continue to collect donated blankets for adults too.  We will be running both campaigns side by side together this year.

We are very close to completion of our goal for the Lehigh Valley Health Network and when that goal is completed we will be announcing the next cancer center we will be collecting donated blankets to benefit.  We have a very exciting year planned for Layers of Love!  We know that without your generous donations we would not be able to provide these blankets that are providing comfort and warmth for chemotherapy patients.   We are very grateful and appreciative of your help.  As long as there are chemotherapy patients, we will be working hard to make sure they are provided with a blanket.

Please be sure to visit the Friends Like Us website to see all the wonderful work they are doing for children with cancer. Friends Like Us is a nonprofit childhood cancer organization with a goal to help children who have been devastated by cancer.   They do great work and are truly a wonderful organization.

2010 What a Year!

Layers of Love Logo

We launched Layers of Love on On February 24, 2010. What a year it has been! What started with a simple idea and an email sent from a dear friend late at night,  has blossomed into a full-blown non-profit, collecting brand new homemade fleece blankets to provide comfort and warmth to chemotherapy patients.

Layers of Love started by collecting blankets specifically for those chemotherapy patients at Cooper Cancer Institute in Voorhees, New Jersey. We completed our goal plus some, and now we are close to meeting another goal for the chemotherapy patients at Lehigh Valley Health Network.

Donated Fleece Blankets

This year, Layers of Love had a great amount of help from very generous people. We were lucky enough to work with many community groups, individuals, teens, charter school students and college students, all toward one common goal, providing comfort and warmth for people who need it most.

We received a HUGE lift from a Life Scout Sam Keefer, whose Eagle Scout project was to not only collect blankets to benefit the chemotherapy patients at Cooper Cancer Institute, but he also organized and ran a fundraiser, plus organized a volunteer event to put over 50 blankets together. We also held our first Fleece Blanket Tying Event at Palmerton Library. We had a lot of help from volunteers who gave up a night of their time to come out and help put blankets together. It was a lot of fun.

Another fun group was the group of teenage girls who came over our house for a Fleece Tying Family Fun Night. My daughter and her friends had a lot of fun. Not only did we receive generous donations of tied fleece blankets but we also received handsewn blanket donations. Along with those, we also received bolts of fleece fabric from a wonderful mother and daughter. That donation in turn led to a church youth group pairing up their fabric with the donated fabric to make beautiful blankets for more chemotherapy patients.

Donations don’t have to come locally, and many donations to Layers of Love did not. We were contacted by a dorm of college students at Purdue University who made four very special blankets for Layers of Love to be donated specifically for chemotherapy patients who are battling breast cancer. But not all blanket donations came from community groups, many came from individuals from all over the globe, we have even received blankets from as far away as Ireland!

We also had the privilege of working with another charity very closely during the month of November. Friends Like Us is a wonderful children’s charity. Friends Like Us is a non-profit childhood cancer organization with a goal to help children who have been devastated by cancer. They provide children who have been diagnosed with cancer undergoing chemotherapy a customized chemo bear with interactive accessories and a children’s cancer book. We are looking forward to the new year and are very excited to be working with Friends Like Us again. We will have more information, and a full official announcement on this campaign right after the new year.

Far and away the most rewarding part of the past year was our delivery of your donated blankets to the chemotherapy patients at Cooper Cancer Institute.  That was a day I will never forget and is never far from my mind.  As I wrote in the original blog post “It was wonderful to give a patient a blanket and see their face light up and for them to immediately put them to use.  YOUR generous donations have made a huge difference to these chemotherapy patients.  YOU have made it possible for them to have comfort and warmth as they go forward with their treatments.  We cannot thank you enough for all the donations we have received.”

Those words stand true to this day.  Layers of Love would not be where it is today without all of your generous donations.  We are very proud to say that to date we have received more than 108 blanket donations. Along with donations to both Cooper Cancer Institute and upcoming to the Lehigh Valley Health Network, we have also received numerous emails from individuals requesting blankets for loved ones who are currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments, we are pleased to say we have not turned down a single request this year.

We are so proud of everything we’ve accomplished this year, thanks to you. We rely on your generous donations, and you have not let us down.  We are so grateful for each and every donation we have received, and to all of you we say THANK YOU.

As we are moving on into the new year of 2011, we are looking forward to helping even more chemotherapy patients. We have a lot planned to help us reach our goals.  At Layers of Love, we don’t plan on resting until every chemotherapy patient who needs one has received a brand new fleece blanket to provide them with comfort and warmth as they go through their treatments.

From Layers of Love to you and your family, Happy New Year.