FAITHFUL COMMUNITY DONATION — From left to right, Lois Chilton, Sunnyside Fire Chief Ken Anderson and Joanne Vining present the department with comforting fleece blankets hand-tied by the Ladies of Immanuel Church in Grandview. Vining, along with Chilton and the spirited six-member work party, created a community project which will provide children, seniors or anyone traumatized from a horrific emergency requiring public safety response, the comfort and security of a handcrafted blanket.

Joanne Vining and Lois Chilton, along with the Ladies of Immanuel Church in Grandview, were spiritually guided to create a community project which would provide children or seniors traumatized from a horrific emergency requiring public safety response, the comfort and security of a handcrafted blanket.

I spoke to each of the ladies to learn about their roles and purpose of the project – the spiritual importance for serving both their church and community. Their faithful commitment to help make a comforting difference in the lives of others was inspiring.

Joanne told me how Thrivent Financial for Christians has sponsored a lot of small projects which quite a few members of the congregation have done. This project was suggested by the organization to her and she felt it was one that she could handle.

“Lois and I did this project together,” described Joanne when discussing her involvement. She said Lois spoke to the Grandview and Sunnyside Fire and Police Departments about the idea, their interest and the number of blankets they could use. A total of 12 was the number the group set out to make.

With a $250.00 debit card in hand from the sponsoring foundation, Joanne went shopping for kid-friendly fleece materials. After shopping for 12 blankets and staying within her project budget, she did all the cutting in preparation for the six-member work party who spent almost three hours tying the blankets and patterns together. There was no sewing required.

“We had a sheriff here on our street whose momma helped tie, and he asked if there was any chance, he could carry one in his car, so we let the Benton County Sheriff have one too,” Lois explained.

The blankets were made to keep children feeling safe and from shivering in fear. The Ladies of Immanuel Church also wanted to instill a comforting embrace to those going through a rough time to faithfully believe that this difficult moment will pass.

“It was very gratifying. I was pleased how everything went and thought they turned out really nice. And, I’m just real excited for them now to be given out to the children and be used,” Joanne expressed.

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