Masters in Philanthropy: Senior crochets for kids across New York

February 5, 2021

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Emma Listokin

Emma Listokin ’21 crochets a blanket, which will be donated to a child in a hospital or foster care.

Masters senior Emma Listokin has crocheted over 200 blankets since March. While Listokin has been learning remotely for the majority of the coronavirus pandemic, she has spent her days making gifts for children who are in-need. 

“As terrible as it [the pandemic] is, a silver lining is that I’m having so much more time to crochet,” she said. 

As a sophomore, Listokin got involved with Binky Patrol, a national organization aiming to collect and donate homemade blankets, hats, and stuffed animals to children who are in hospitals or foster homes. 

“I was just looking for a way that I could use my skills of crocheting and my passion for good,” she said. 

Listokin said her blankets are able to ease children who may be experiencing anxiety or distress while battling in hospitals.

“Having something that’s homemade, comforting, and also warm at the same time, can make such a difference,” she said. 

Listokin established and runs the downstate New York chapter for Binky Patrol, but as the only local volunteer, she hopes to encourage others to contribute; whether assisting to crochet, monetarily donating, or offering materials, she said that the smile children have on their faces after receiving a gift is priceless.    

Due to COVID-19, Listokin is unable to personally deliver the gifts to the children. Although this has brought her much disappointment, she said it still brings her joy to know that her hand-made creations will make a child’s day. 

“There’s no other feeling than dropping them off. I pop open my trunk and it’s stuck to the brim with blankets and hats,” Listokin said. 

In addition to Binky Patrol, Listokin partners with Foundling, one of New York City’s oldest and largest child welfare agencies. She specifically donates her goods to those in foster care and the Crisis Nursery, a care facility that provides children a safe environment while their parents are facing different crises, including loss of housing, health concerns, and escaping domestic violence. Listokin said that giving something as simple as a blanket can convey a sincere message. 

 “You may not have a [strong] relationship with your parents or maybe you’re in foster care, but there’s still someone out there that’s looking out for you and has you in their heart.”

NOTE: If you are interested in learning more about how you can get involved with Binky Patrol, email: emma.listokin@mastersny.org.

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