Who We Are: Ryan’s Case for Smiles (formerly known as ConKerr Cancer) is one of the few volunteer organizations
solely dedicated to helping sick children cope with the stress of life changing illnesses and injuries.
What We Do: We provide children with whimsical pillowcases that give them an emotional boost and remind them they are not defined by their illnesses. This simple gift provides proven stress relievers including distraction and hope that enhances the emotional well-being of the children and their families.
Why We Began: Cindy Kerr began making pillowcases for her son Ryan more than a decade ago to brighten up his hospital room and put a smile on his face during his cancer treatment. While Ryan is no longer with us physically, his legacy lives on in Ryan’s Case for Smiles.
What We Know: A hospital stay can be a terrifying experience for a child. So terrifying that 20% of children who survive cancer meet the full clinical diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). That’s a similar rate of PTSD to all U.S. Military Veterans since the Vietnam war. The promising news is research shows trauma can be minimized and outcomes can be improved through experiences that reduce stress. While seemingly simple, a pillowcase provides seven proven stress relievers that enhance the emotional well-being of the children and their families. These stress relievers include:
Why We Exist: With every stitch, every yard of fabric and every pillowcase, we get one step closer to our goal of helping kids with life changing illnesses or injuries, feel better to heal better.
How Others Can Help: We rely on volunteers and support throughout North America in the following ways:
- Sewing a pillowcase
- Donating fabric, funds or time
- Spreading awareness about our mission
- Hosting your own pajama day at your school, camp, church group, ect.
Our Work by the Numbers:
- More than 120 chapters comprised of thousands of volunteers
- More than 5 million hours of volunteer time donated
- Over 50,000 children at over 330 hospitals throughout North America helped annually
- More than 1 Million pillowcases delivered and counting
- Over $10 Million in donated fabric and supplies
- Value = Priceless
Leadership: Cindy Kerr, President, CEO, and Founder; 120 Regional Coordinators across North America
For more information on how you can get involved or to learn more visit: www.caseforsmiles.org
There are several ways that you can contribute to Ryan’s Case for Smiles other than just coming to the Ryan’s Case for Smiles Sewing Event Day at Serendipity.
Ashley - who works at Serendipity - is the Delaware Chapter Coordinator for Ryan's Case for Smiles.
Option 1: Drop off completed pillowcases to the donation container at the shop.
Option 2: Purchase pillowcase kits from Serendipity and leave them in the donation container to be sewn.
Option 3: Purchase pillowcase kits from Serendipity, sew them and return them to the donation container at the shop.
Option 4: Make a monetary donation to Ryan’s Case for Smiles (you can leave a check at the shop, and Ashley will make sure it goes to the Delaware Chapter).
Option 5: Purchase/donate fabric and leave it at Serendipity. Ashley can use it to cut up into pillowcase kits for Ryan’s Case for Smiles Sewing Events.
Option 6: Make a monetary donation to Ryan’s Case for Smiles via the Ryan’s Case for Smiles website (http://caseforsmiles.org).
Directions on how to make a pillowcase:
How to Make a Pillowcase Directions PDF File
If making the 2 fabric pillowcase:
Body of Pillowcase is 3/4 of a yard of fabric
Pillowcase Top is 1/3 of a yard of fabric
-Fabric for kids ages 0 to 18
-Fits a standard size pillow
Pillowcases must be made from cotton or flannel fabric.
Pillowcase fabric can be holiday fabric themed.
Pillowcase can be the "hot dog method", made from 2 fabrics, or 3 fabrics with the flange/french seams.
Pillowcases should be washed and bagged, one per bag.