Students design comfort for critically ill patients

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    Left with extra time at the end of her classes, Stephanie Bailey began incorporating a philanthropic element into her lessons.

    Bailey, an instructor of fashion merchandising, began to team up with the Soft Touch Ministry to provide items such as pillows to seriously ill patients. 

    Bailey said she decided to begin working with the program after attending a fundraiser for Lifeline Chaplaincy, a ministry of the Church of Christ.

    Soft Touch Ministry has worked with hospitals for more than 40 years, providing small items such as lap robes, pillows and wheelchair bags to seriously ill patients. After learning about the cause, Bailey felt a need to help.

    “They had a display there with pillows that volunteers made and that’s where I was able to get the idea,” she said.

    Bailey’s students make either a heart-shaped or a rectangular pillow, as per the organization’s design regulations, with students using scraps left over from other classes. Bailey provides the stuffing for the pillows.

    Danielle Fletcher, a sophomore fashion merchandising major, said she liked being involved with the Soft Touch Ministry because giving back is very important to her.

    Janet Steele, the Soft Touch Ministry coordinator for Tarrant County, said the university’s involvement is unique within their volunteer base.

    “They are the only donors coming from a collegiate classroom in the whole organization,” Steele said. “This is the only donation of its kind.”