Scouts’ blanket donations benefit patients

Photo courtesy of Oakwood Healthcare System

Girl Scouts Lydia Steyaert, Cassidy VanEvery, Olivia Papalia and Hannah Dunaway with Troop 40847 in Trenton sit surrounded by blankets they made for Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center patients before they tour some of the facilities there Feb. 2.

TRENTON — The creative efforts of Trenton’s 40847 Girl Scouts Troop will warm the hearts of several terminally and critically ill patients this winter through their donation to Oakwood Healthcare System’s Spread the Love program.

The troop chose Spread the Love as their biggest community service project this year and worked hard to raise funds in order to purchase the materials to make more than 60 fleece blankets for patients and their families.

“This is such an incredibly beautiful thing to do,” said Beverly Beltramo, director of Spiritual Support at Oakwood. The Spread the Love Program has brought comfort and healing to patients for almost eight years.

The program supports patients and their families during their most challenging times.

The girls, ages 10 to 12, put on a homemade cookie fundraiser to raise money to purchase blanket materials. They worked as a team to create 60 hand-made blankets, which were donated to Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center last week.

“It was important to come here today,” said troop leader Elaine Franzel, 42, of Trenton. “The girls were able to see how they have a direct impact on their local community.”

The idea came from Franzel’s mother, an Oakwood employee, who alerted Franzel about the Spread the Love Program.The troop spent the evening meeting with Oakwood staff and also toured the Mother and Baby Unit.