Season of giving: Local students create, donate gift bags to Queen of the Valley Foundation

Warm socks, cozy scarves and calming lotions are just a few of the comforting items that patients undergoing cancer treatment at Providence Queen of the Valley Medical Center will receive in special goodie bags donated to the hospital’s foundation by Vintage High School students.

“We are profoundly moved by the compassion and generosity exhibited by these remarkable high school students,” Queen of the Valley Foundation President/CEO Rachael Poer said of the donation made to the Napa hospital on Thursday, Dec. 7. “Their donation not only reflects their empathetic hearts, but also serves as a powerful reminder that even the smallest gestures can make a significant impact on the lives of those facing the challenges of cancer.”

For the past two years, students in Shawn Sandahl’s Advanced Printing and Graphics College & Career Readiness Program have participated in a community project where they used their design work to benefit a local organization. This year, however, the group wanted to do something larger in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month so they chose to use their design skills to benefit Queen of the Valley Foundation and provide gifts to patients battling cancer.

“We wanted to do something more and really make an impact on our community,” Sandahl said. “It’s very meaningful for the students to give back and to see a project like this come to fruition.”

Working throughout the semester, the classes designed and printed a sweatshirt, T-shirt and crew neck shirt. The group then sold the items to their classmates and teachers in the school activity office during October, which coincides with Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Proceeds from the sales, as well as community contributions, were used to purchase and put together goodie bags for breast cancer and infusion center patients at the Queen. Altogether, 50 goodie bags were given to the Queen.

Vintage High School senior, Alaina D’Adamo, 17, led the project from start to finish and managed coordination with the team at the Queen.

“I loved designing and being able to give back to other people in this way,” she said. “Three members of my family have suffered from breast cancer, so it was really special to me that we chose this as our nonprofit project.”

Beginning this month, caregivers will distribute the goodie bags to new patients when they visit the Queen for their first treatments – offering warmth, comfort and support during their journey toward healing.

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