By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
TRENTON – Trenton High School students supported a National Honor Society service project April 27 to assemble fleece blankets to comfort hospitalized children.
Three NHS students from Wyandotte Roosevelt High School joined the THS volunteers after school, as well.
The event, spearheaded by Trenton High School junior Nina Lomas, 17, required fundraising to purchase kits from the non-profit group Fleece and Thank You, which also distributes the assembled fleece blankets to area children’s hospitals.
The students also recorded a group greeting, and a Q.R. (quick response) code tag on each fleece blanket will allow the recipients to scan the tag with a smart phone and play back the online recorded message.
NHS faculty advisor Dan Taylor said Lomas collected about $2,000 in community donations to purchase 80 fleece blanket kits for the students to assemble.
“This is kind of something fun, and they got all kinds of different fun patterns for the kids,” Taylor said. “It’s nice because it’s already precut to the right size and it’s ready to go, and they just have to cut the (fringe) strips and make their knots.”
Taylor said that it was great to see the students together and working on a project.
“After the last couple of years, it is nice seeing the kids all together, actually working on something productive,” he said. “Not that they don’t in school, but to get together outside of school is a good feeling, to see them giving back.”
Taylor said that while NHS students need to perform service hours, some underclassmen have joined them just because they wanted to participate.
“They will have a little bit of fun with each other and do something to give back,” he said.
Lomas said the strong volunteer turnout among her classmates made her realize that THS students are closer than she realized.
“It makes me feel really good to see people helping out people that need it,” she said.
Lomas said money to buy the fleece blanket kits was raised through donations.
“I called a bunch of people, we posted it on social media, and we even had strangers donating,” she said. “It was really cool that people I didn’t even know were willing to help out.”
Lomas said some students from Wyandotte Roosevelt High School NHS joined them and were getting to know the THS student volunteers.
“Underclassmen are mixing with upperclassmen, and someone made brownies, so everyone is just kind of coming together,” she said with a smile.
Lomas said the group of volunteers who turned out filled her heart with joy.
“I am very thankful that this many people were willing to trust me and have faith in me to put something like this together, but also willing to help out as well,” she said. “I am very grateful for everyone that donated and all the kids that came out to help.”
NHS member Caleb Lawrence, 16, said he enjoys volunteering to help children in need.
“It’s a good opportunity to get (service) hours, and I wasn’t doing anything,” he said. “I did it last year, at home, because we couldn’t meet together. I did it with my brother, so we made one together, but it’s just tying knots.”
NHS member Ashley Brendel, 16, said she thought it was a great project.
“The cause is fantastic, with the kids and the hospital,” she said. “I like that everybody’s here today, and I can talk to other people whom I don’t have classes with and I haven’t seen since the beginning of the pandemic.”
Brendel said she feels like the project makes a difference.
“I think they are really going to enjoy these blankets,” she said.
Ava Carson, 17, said she was enjoying finishing up the blanket kit because she enjoys craft projects.
“I feel like this is similar, but it is also for a good cause, which is very exciting, too,” she said. “And we also get to make a video to go along with the blankets, so that when the kids in the hospital get them they can watch the video – it adds a personal touch to them.”
Carson said she was also glad to reconnect with her classmates.
“I really enjoy it, because it promotes social interaction, which I feel like over the past couple years has been scarce because of the pandemic,” she said. “So just hanging out with my friends and doing something good is just so exciting.”