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Volunteer Spotlight: Sunshine Sewers

Project Sunshine started its Sunshine Sewer chapters in August 2013. In less than two years, over forty dedicated Sunshine Sewer volunteers who have made almost 1,000 Surgi Dolls, baby blankets, pillowcases and other handmade donations!

Jamie Perrault, a student at New Mexico State University (NMSU), was among the first Sunshine Sewers. She has organized sewing parties for members of the Association of Family and Consumer Sciences at NMSU where they make Surgi Dolls for children facing medical challenges across the nation. "My major is in clothing and textiles so I am hoping to find more people who love to sew and want to use it to benefit a wonderful cause!" Jamie says. Today the chapter has 15 members and is growing.

Zelda Lubart, affectionately known as "The Surgi Doll Lady", has been sewing Surgi Dolls for Project Sunshine for years. One of her signature creations are dolls with a playful patterned fleece on one side, which are incredibly popular among hospitals. Through her long history with Project Sunshine, Zelda has made hundreds of dolls, blankets and pillow cases, some of which were even brought by Project Sunshine staff to the orphans in China. Zelda also recruited her equally talented friend Linda Rosenthal in Florida to make knitted items for Project Sunshine every summer. "A child�s smile makes my heart sing," Zelda says.

In Albany, NY, the members of Seniors on the Go, the senior ministry at the Capital Area Council of Churches in Albany, were introduced to Project Sunshine by the council intern Chelsea Carson, a former Project Sunshine Iona College volunteer. One of the volunteers does the stitching for all the dolls while the others fill them with stuffing. When asked what the experience means to the volunteers at Seniors on the Go, Chelsea said, "Giving back to the community through Project Sunshine has a very special meaning to each of these ladies. They are able to touch so many lives right from their community room, and it has filled them with such joy and purpose to do so." These are just a few of the many Sunshine Sewers who help Project Sunshine spread joy and play worldwide!

More Volunteer Stories of Interest

Sports Illustrated model, Damaris Lewis, volunteered for her second year as a Project Sunshine Dance Camp instructor to empower young women through dance.
Emilio Delgado, who has played Luis on Sesame Street for 40 years, brought sunshine to pediatric patients at Mount Sinai´s KidZone as part of Project Sunshine´s Book Club

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