Brave the Shave blankets help comfort honorees


Jennifer Holen, Brave the Shave honoree liaison, (far right) stands with some of the Wachter Middle School students who made blankets and donated them to this year’s Brave the Shave honorees.

In addition to cold fingers and toes, blankets can also warm the heart.

Students from Wachter Middle School in Bismarck, ND, recently made tie blankets and donated them to Brave the Shave honorees and the honorees’ families.

The students were led by Joylyn Ciz, who teaches Family and Consumer Science classes for sixth through eighth grades at Wachter Middle School.

Joylyn was looking to include a community service project in her curriculum. Through her husband, John Ciz, Basin Electric manager of mechanical engineering, she connected with Jennifer Holen, Basin Electric supervisor of community and employee engagement and Brave the Shave honoree liaison.

Jennifer and Joylyn hatched the idea to donate the blankets to Brave the Shave honorees. This year there are 41 honoree families. About 15 honorees are actively battling cancer, while other children are angels or in remission. Learn more at Brave the Shave Honorees.

“The students were shocked to hear about how many kids we honor at our Brave the Shave event every year,” Holen says. “It’s just neat to see kids helping kids and want to help others.”

The project took off in October 2015 and the blankets were given to the honorees during a special pool party in March. They were immediately put to use – a great way to show the honoree kids that they are wrapped in love and support from the Brave the Shave community, Holen says.

The students enjoyed making the blankets, Joylyn says, and some students even ended up purchasing fabric and making blankets for themselves.

“The project has been very meaningful,” Joylyn says. “It is heart-warming to see kids, some of whom have not had a chance to do community service projects, make something helpful for other kids.”

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