April 25, 2023

Nurse Sews Blankets and Stuffed Animals for Pediatric Patients

Nurse Sews Blankets and Stuffed Animals for Pediatric Patients

Image: Diana Ellsworth

After becoming a nurse at 52, Diana Ellsworth accepted a position at Dignity Health – Community Hospital San Bernardino (CHSB) on the telemetry unit but it was her ability to sew that really made a difference within her hospital community. 

Becoming a Nurse at Age 52

“I was 52 when I finally became a nurse, and I’ve been here 11 years now,” said Ellsworth. “I’ll stay here until I retire because I’m doing what I always wanted to do, helping people get better.”

Ellsworth spent nearly 20 years as a stay-at-home mother and then decided to pursue her passions as a nurse at San Bernardino Valley College through the sponsorship program at CHSB. This came with a two-year commitment. 

Sewing PPE For Coworkers

After the COVID-19 pandemic started, Ellsworth started sewing face masks and scrub caps for co-workers out of scrubs that were no longer being used. Her grandmother had taught her to sew and she used it as a way to spread hope and kindness and to help fellow co-workers during a very difficult time. 

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Sewing Gifts For Pediatric Patients

After exhausting the need for scrub caps and face masks, Ellsworth turned her attention to helping children at the Community Hospital’s Children’s Subacute Center. She’s sewn hundreds of blankets, pillowcases, and stuffed animal dogs for patients in the hospital. 

“The kids live there, and if I can make something that can bring a smile to their faces and make them happy, that makes me feel good,” Ellsworth said.

Image: Ellsworth with stuffed animals sewn for patients

“Diana spent hours of her personal time sewing 80 stuffed animals and blankets for every child in our Pediatric Subacute Center,” said June Collison, CHSB Hospital President. “These stuffed animals brought the children joy and companionship during those times of isolation.”


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