Fort Bragg MPs partner with local Project Linus to help children
February 10, 2012
FORT BRAGG, N.C. - In the early morning hours of Jan. 4, a Family stood outside the charred ruins of their house in the Bastogne Gables community on Fort Bragg. While everyone escaped the fire with their lives, all of the Family's belongings were destroyed.
Fort Bragg Fire Rescue was able to put out the fire before it spread to any other houses and the military police and emergency medical technicians were on hand to help ensure the safety of the Family and the rest of neighborhood.
The two small children of the Family were in need of the comfort and security of a blanket. This is where Project Linus can help.
Project Linus is an organization that provides children with a security blanket in times of need. The organization is named after the Charles Schulz Peanuts character, Linus, who had to have his trusted blanket with him at all times.
"When a child receives a blanket I hope it gives them a sense of security and comfort and that it lets them know that someone thinks they are very special and someone cares about them," said Pat Weber chapter coordinator for the Sandhills and Moore county area.
Project Linus was contacted by the 16th Military Police Brigade Family readiness support assistant, Teizel Berry, for a possible donation of blankets.
Weber originally donated 20 blankets to the brigade. She later decided to donate more than 140 blankets to the unit after Col. Chad McRee, 16th MP Bde. commander, explained that he was also responsible for all Fort Bragg emergency services.
The brigade plans to have most of the blankets go to the Provost Marshal Office, the different fire houses and the EMTs located on Fort Bragg, explained Berry.
A small number will be given to the children of deployed Soldiers within the 16th MP Bde. to include 91st Military Police Battalion located at Fort Drum N.Y.; 385th Military Police Battalion located at Fort Stewart, Ga.; 503rd Military police Battalion located at Fort Bragg; and the 716th Military Police Battalion located at Fort Campbell, Ky.
Now, during each shift the military police, fire rescue and EMTs at each installation will have blankets on hand to give to children in a crisis. Whether that is a lost child or one who was involved in a traffic accident.
"Any traumatizing event in that child's life, we want them to have a blanket," said Weber.
According to the Project Linus website, the project started in Denver when Karen Loucks decided to give homemade blankets to children in the Rocky Mountain Children's Cancer Center.
Loucks was inspired in 1995, to give children blankets after reading an article titled "Joy to the World" in Parade Magazine. In part of the article a little girl is going through chemotherapy stated that her security blanket helped her get through the treatments.
According to the Project Linus website, as of Sept. 30, 2011, the organization has given more than 4,000,000 blankets to kids in distress and there are 368 chapters of the project nationwide. The Sandhills and Moore County chapter has donated more than 7,800 blankets since it began.
"It's great to see that there are people still willing to help others," said Berry
If you are interested in donating handmade blankets to Project Linus or volunteering, you can contact Pat Weber at firstname.lastname@example.org.