Ronkonkoma, NY - February 3, 2014 - Legislator John M. Kennedy Jr., Chairman of the Suffolk County Legislature Republican Caucus, recently honored The Giving Doll at the St. Regis Knights of Columbus Council and Maureen Ennis for donating over 2500 dolls to children in need across the globe, including 20 dolls to local homeless families through the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless. To date, The Giving Doll has donated over 20,250 dolls in nations around the world.
The Giving Doll was created by Jan Householder in 2006 in Ohio, as a community volunteer project, when a friend’s daughter became a patient at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Handmade cloth dolls were constructed by volunteers, and the first dolls were taken to the hospital. As other needs became apparent, the program expanded to include children in a variety of settings worldwide and chapters opened up throughout the United States. Mareen Ennis founded the New York chapter in 2011 in her home. Maureen sewed each doll individually by hand until she secured enough volunteers, who now divide the tasks into two groups. To date, the New York Chapter of the Giving Doll has made over 2500 dolls, all being donated to children in need.
The Giving Doll Shop led by Maureen Ennis works out of the St. Regis Knights of Columbus Council in Ronkonkoma, hosting over 100 volunteers who create the dolls, gathering every Thursday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the Knights of Columbus Council (2850 Pond Rd, Lake Ronkonkoma, NY 11779). The program is now working with several organizations such as Stony Brook Pediatric Cancer Center, Toys of Hope, Ronald McDonald House, Cohen's Children's Medical Center, as well as filling private requests. The Council graciously opened its doors for The Giving Doll voluntarily, and at the post The Giving Doll stores materials, supplies and has space for meetings and well-organized areas for working on the complete construction of the dolls.
The N.Y.G.D. has dolls in Afghanistan, Australia, Germany, Haiti, Ireland, Kosovo, Taiwan, as well as 25 states across the United States. As this is an ongoing project, and they continue to fill requests as they come in, cash donations are appreciated, all donations are Tax deductible. For more information, or if you would like to donate time or supplies please contact, Maureen Ennis directly at 631-278-4699. or you can contact Legislator Kennedy’s office at (631) 854-3735.