My Community Project by Sydney K., Class of 2019

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For my community project, the goal was to spread joy and love to people suffering from cancer. Originally, my intent was to work with the organization Reach Out and Read, and read books to pediatric cancer patients. Unfortunately, I recently learned that Washington State law requires you to be eighteen years of age to make direct contact with patients. I still wanted to do something to help the pediatric cancer community, so I looked into the various programs the Seattle Children’s hospital has. That’s when I decided to make fleece tie blankets and donate them to Seattle Children’s hospital cancer ward. Currently I am in the process of creating five big and fuzzy blankets that I hope will bring smiles to the the kids at Seattle Children’s who are suffering from cancer.

Why did I want to help this community? A couple years ago, both my Opa and my Grandpa died of cancer. It was brutal watching how they were affected by it, not just physically, but also mentally. To me, there was nothing better than watching my Opa smile and laugh when I read with him, or played violin for him. Cancer is a very stressful illness, and pediatric patients are often in and out of hospitals getting treatments and tests. Not being able to go to school, or take a vacation, or hang out with friends, plus the extreme physical toll cancer has on children puts them at a very high risk for depression and anxiety. Even simple things, like a fuzzy blanket, can help brighten patients’ days. To learn more about how the illness affects kids, and what we can do to help, I’m planning to interview my friend who had bone cancer as a child.