August 12, 2020
Cheer Box from EveryStep Inspires Teen to Make Blankets for Grieving Families
Fifteen-year-old Chase Adam knows firsthand how an act of kindness can make a world of difference to someone who is grieving. In 2015, he and his family were nominated to receive a Cheer Box from EveryStep Grief & Loss Services’ Amanda the Panda program as they were mourning the death of Chase’s father.
Delivered to the family’s door, the Cheer Box was filled with 12 individually wrapped gifts offering remembrance and meaning, and the family opened the gifts throughout the holiday season.
Five years later, one of the Cheer Box gifts – a blanket – inspired Chase to offer comfort to other grieving families, and this summer he coordinated a drive to make and donate 90 blankets for EveryStep’s Cheer Box program.
“This has been a very rewarding and successful experience for me,” Chase says. “It feels so good to know I am helping other children who have lost a parent just like me.”
Chase, a member of the Prairie Shooting Stars 4-H Club and Winneshiek County Council, organized a “grab-n-go” blanket workshop. Participants were able to make two tie blankets – one to keep and one to donate. Some of the blankets were donated locally within Winneshiek County. Chase dropped off the other 90 blankets at EveryStep Grief & Loss Services’ Amanda the Panda office on July 30.
“I wanted to give back to other children who have gone through the same thing I have,” says Chase. “Even five years later after losing my dad I still remember the feeling I had when I received my blanket from EveryStep Grief & Loss Services,” Chase says. “I hope this brings a similar feeling to other children.”
It’s still hard to not have his dad with him, Chase says, but “the Amanda the Panda program helped me and I wanted to help others too.”
No doubt his dad would be proud.
This fall, EveryStep plans to deliver 500 Cheer Boxes to grieving individuals and families throughout Iowa and beyond. To help fill our Cheer Boxes, please consider purchasing and donating needed items through EveryStep’s Cheer Box “wish list” on Amazon.
Learn more about the grief support offered through EveryStep Grief & Loss Services, including Cheer Boxes, online support groups and camps, resources and more: https://www.everystep.org/services/grief-loss.
See more about Chase's blanket project on his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/grabngotieblanketsforchildrenwholostaparent.