Kent Island Student, Project Linus Donate Blankets for Children to UM Shore Regional Health Facilities

Shown with UM Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown staff members is Gregory Couch (center), who delivered Project Linus blankets for use by children who come to the Emergency Center and UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown.

Gregory Couch, of Kent Island, recently donated handmade blankets to UM Shore Regional Health’s Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown and Shore Medical Center at Chestertown through his newly opened chapter of Project Linus. These blankets will be used primarily for young children who come in to medical facilities under harsh circumstances and need comfort.

The 11-year old 5th grader at Bayside Elementary School began looking for ways he could help his community through volunteer work. He and his mom, Kimberly Couch, looked at different charities in which children can be involved. They soon found Project Linus and realized there was not a chapter for the mid-shore of Maryland.

In April 2016, with the help of his mom, Gregory opened a chapter that covers Caroline, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties where they support blanket drives and donate their homemade blankets. Gregory has given presentations to all four County Councils and has also met with local Girl Scout leadership to engage them in getting involved with Project Linus.

“We are gracious for the hard work and effort Gregory puts into helping out the community through Project Linus,” says Mary Alice Vanhoy, manager of the UM Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown and the ED at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. “We have many frightened children come through our emergency departments after unfortunate circumstances and these blankets offer a sense of comfort when they really need it.”

Project Linus is a non-profit organization represented by chapters covering all 50 states. Volunteers or “blanketeers” create blanket drives, make the blankets and then donate them to healthcare facilities where there may be children in need of warmth and comfort.

“My goal is to bring comfort to kids around the area that are in need,” said Gregory. “I am happy to have helped out my community and thank anyone who has helped us along the way.”

More information about Project Linus and volunteering with the mid-shore chapter may be obtained by visiting or calling Kimberly Couch at 410 924-2488.