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Hospital-bound kids to get Valentine's cards
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Donna Hellmann was listening to 91.9 FM one day and heard about an idea that she thought was so inspiring that she and some friends are going to give it a try here in Effingham County.

Together with members of the Effingham Arts Council, they are going to create an opportunity for area kids to make Valentine’s Day cards for children in area hospitals. The free workshop will be held on Jan. 30 from 10:30 a.m.-noon at the Effingham Library in Springfield.

Hellmann said they are planning on having their cards ready by the Feb. 4 deadline so they can be distributed by 91.9, known as HIS Radio, with their other cards. But if they don’t make the deadline for some reason, they will just do the delivering themselves.

Because the cards are going to children with a variety of different upbringings, injuries and illnesses, a few guidelines have been given by some of the participating hospitals:

1. Please, no glitter on cards—stickers are great, though.

2. Sadly, because of their illness, some kids may not be able to go home. Please do not use the words “get well” or “feel better” in your card, but you can let the kids know that you are “thinking of them” and that you think they are special and loved.

3. No sealed envelopes, please

4. To protect your privacy, please do not include your name, address or school/church name

5. Per the request of most hospitals, please do not include any religious references (the cards are going to mainstream hospitals)

6. If you send multiple Valentines, please separate gender-specific cards, if applicable (i.e., cards to boys in one envelope and cards to girls in another)

7. Because of dietary needs, please do not include candy of any kind