Project Linus makes blankets for children in need

May 2—GREENSBURG — After retiring from a busy career in post-secondary education, Connie Adelman found that you can only do so much cleaning, laundry and reading — and she wasn't one for lounging around or television watching — but she did like to crochet.

Wanting to channel that talent into a good cause, she discovered "Project Linus" during an Internet search. Project Linus is a national organization with local chapters who provide new, handmade, washable blankets to be given as gifts to seriously ill and traumatized children ages newborn to 18.

It wasn't long before she applied for, and was granted, a chapter for Decatur, Franklin and Ripley counties. Rush County was recently added to the chapter.

She was initially concerned about how to get the organization up and running (and making sure it was successful), but those concerns quickly faded.

She put something on her Facebook page and suggested to the Lake Santee Women's Club that they make blankets at one of their meetings. That effort grew to include a relative in Ohio, a church member, organizations that have community service days, and countless other people who really seem to enjoy making blankets for kids in need. Meanwhile, the group has received several Walmart Community Grants and other donations which they use to buy materials for the blankets.

The group, initially comprised primarily of Lake Santee Women's Club members, began meeting and making blankets in March 2021. By April, they had created 56 blankets — from fleece "tie" blankets and fleece with a crocheted border to crocheted and knitted afghans.

The first year for this effort those involved made 209 blankets. In 2022, the chapter was able to provide 792 blankets to children, and in 2023 they distributed 1,171! So far, the organization has been able to provide more than 2,100 blankets to children in our area.

Currently, those involved are providing blankets to multiple Decatur Community Hospital departments, Children's Advocacy, Bread of Life clients with children, Clarity Pregnancy Services, Mary Margaret Hospital in Batesville, Safe Passages, SEI Voices of Children, Nurse Family Partnership, New Directions, Child Services, IU Ball Hospital, and to school counselors and individual children they are aware of who need a blanket.

On Tuesday, April 16, 2024, First Financial Bank offered their employees community serve hours by participating in a blanket making day for Project Linus. Nineteen employees made and packaged 45 blankets in just three hours! A couple employees also requested material to make 20 additional blankets on their own time. This is First Financial Bank employees third year and has become an annual community service project for them.

The only requirements for the blankets are they must be new and handmade, washable, free of pins, and come from smoke-free environments.

There's a drop box at the Decatur County Public Library and Tree City Stitches for collecting Project Linus blankets.

If someone wants to volunteer but isn't sure how to proceed, or would like to make a donation so those involved can continue to purchase material to make the blankets, they can contact contact Adelman at or 574-229-4548.