Fresno third-graders make, donate blankets

Janele Howell's class at Maple Creek Elementary in northeast Fresno will make more than 100 small fleece blankets by today for kids in foster care in Fresno County just in time for Christmas.

The class started the project last week with donated fleece material. Howell's inspiration for the blankets, which she had dubbed the "Huggiebuddy," was her young daughter's adored blanket. The target age group for the foster kids receiving the blankets is 1 to 10 years old.

She said with 2,000 children in foster care in the county, the project is meaningful, connecting the kids making the blankets with the children receiving them. Each blanket will be wrapped up with a bow and a personal note from the student who made it.

Howell said the kids are extremely excited. Third-grader McKenna Williams said: "It feels good, great helping other kids in need... It feels good inside to give rather than in getting."

Howell hopes they can continue the service project through the rest of the school year and reach all children in foster care.