Photo credit: Charlotte Bartizek for Dallas Post

Story originally published by the Dallas Post.

Twice a week, 40 women from Trucksville, Pennsylvania, get together to sew quilts. The women are part of a group called Project Donate Joy (or Project DJ). These women get together to sew quilts for sick children in area hospitals, and in early June, they gathered to celebrate finishing their 10,000th donated quilt.

The nonprogit group began in 2003 after members were inspired by a quilt given to a 15-year-old Montgomery County child who was battling brain cancer. The young man, who was a grandson of a friend, took his quilt to cancer treatments as a source of comfort. A few women in the community wanted to make more quilts for children in area hospitals, so they began meeting in the basement of the Trucksville United Methodist Church. Each quilt measures approximately 40x60" long.

Once the group started to grow, so did the number of quilts they finished. In 2007, they had made 577 quilts. The next year, they had finished 1,000. In May of 2016, they completed quilt number 10,000.

Quilts are donated a few times a year to various children's hospitals and other charity organizations. Members of Project DJ said they would not have been able to donate as many quilts without the generous donations of fabric, thread, and other materials they have received over the years. Much of the fabric they use for the quilts is donated, and members of the group make and sell crafts at local craft fairs to help combat the expenses of buying rolls of batting.

It may be a lot of work, but it's worth it when they receive notes of gratitude. On recipient said: "Thank you so much for the beautiful quilt you made for our little boy. He has Down syndrome and recently had heart surgery. We were so touched and blessed to receive such a lovely gift." Another said: "You really made a little girl smile with the beautiful quilt that was made especially for her. She has a long hard road ahead of her, but it is kind deeds such as this that help along the way."

Photo credit: Charlotte Bartizek for Dallas Post
Photo credit: Charlotte Bartizek for Dallas Post