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Staff and Volunteers Participate in Project to Provide New Blankets for Patients

On Wednesday, July 13, 2016, the Friends of the Hospital of Fox Chase Cancer Center held a Blanket Project event at Fox Chase. The event was open to volunteers and staff to help make blankets from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Participants completed five blankets during each session, with a total of 10 blankets created for patients. 

“Colleagues enjoyed the project as they engaged with each other and learned about the donations and how the blankets are presented to the patients,” said Helen Gordon, director of volunteer services at Fox Chase. “These blankets often become an important item for the patients and families here at Fox Chase.”

To date, volunteers and staff have completed more than 90 blankets. Among those making blankets at this event was Amanda Burdick, whose mother, Debra Burdick, is currently a patient at Fox Chase.

“My mom was going through chemo and I was sort of struggling with everything,” Amanda said. “I was approached by Helen Gordon and invited to help make the blankets with the staff. After I was finished, I was offered the blanket to give to my mom. We both thought it was very thoughtful and kind.”

As she receives treatment for stage 4 ovarian cancer, Debra Burdick has nothing but good things to say about the staff and fellow patients at Fox Chase.

“This place is very warm and of course the care is excellent,” said Debra. “Every time I go, I connect with somebody else, get a new story and a new friend.”

Each blanket given to patients comes with a blessing card, and the blankets are made from high-quality antipill fleece. The blankets are incredibly varied and made with a diverse patient population in mind. Volunteers match patterned and solid colors to create the blankets, such as light blue with a butterfly pattern or white with a sports print. Specially trained volunteers present the blankets to the patients on the “Friends Cart” which is funded annually by the Friends of the Hospital of Fox Chase Cancer Center, a chapter of the Board of Associates that supports patient care and provides funds for nursing scholarships. 

In addition to The Friends of the Hospital of Fox Chase support this year, TEVA Pharmaceutical Industries contributed funds to purchase the materials to make blankets. More staff and volunteer events are scheduled for the fall. 

“[The event] was wonderful, I loved it. I was really impressed with the full circle of people and friends involved in it,” said Debra. “For such an ugly disease, Fox Chase makes it so much easier.”