Library patrons create cards for sick kids

Photos by Marlena Sloss/The Herald
Rowan Dismore, 6, of Jasper, shows her mother, Nicki, a card she decorated for hospitalized children at the Jasper Public Library on Friday. Librarian Bethany Sinkhorn of Jasper implemented the idea after seeing it on the internet. "I was just looking for an idea to give back some way this month," she said.


JASPER — Hospitalized children across the country may receive a card this holiday season from someone in Dubois County, thanks to an activity at the Jasper Public Library.

Last week, the library set out craft supplies and encouraged visitors to take a few minutes from their visit to make a holiday card. This week, Teen Services Librarian Bethany Sinkhorn will send the cards to Cards for Hospitalized Kids, an organization that distributes donated cards to children across the country.

“I just thought with it being December, there’s a lot of opportunities to give back,” Sinkhorn said.

She liked the idea of partnering with Cards for Hospitalized Kids for a program because it was something simple the library could put together, but could make a positive impact.

Librarians call simple programs that don’t require their constant attention — like the cardmaking — passive programming. With passive programming, librarians are able to set up the activities, and then let library patrons participate any time during the day.

Rowan Dismore, 6, of Jasper, finishes a card she decorated for hospitalized children at the Jasper Public Library in Jasper on Friday.

“It’s nice because some people can’t come to a specific time for a program, but if something is set out, they can stop by and participate,” Sinkhorn said.

Earlier this month, Sinkhorn set up passive programming activities in the children’s area for International Ninja Day, which was Dec. 5. When the kids came in, they got a checklist with the activities, and those who finished them all got a Dairy Queen coupon.

In January, the library will have puzzles set out for patrons to work on at their leisure in honor of National Puzzle Day on Jan. 29.

“As a librarian, one of your best resources is a random holidays calendar,” Sinkhorn said.

A complete schedule of library programming — both passive and interactive — can be found at

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