coronavirus illinois

Chicago First-Grader's Homemade Bracelets Raise Money For Children's Hospital

Hayley Orlinsky, 7, is hoping to make a difference in the fight against coronavirus with colorful homemade bracelets.

NBCUniversal, Inc.

When Hayley Orlinsky heard there was a need for critical protective equipment for doctors and nurses amid the coronavirus pandemic, she turned a dream into reality by hand-looming bracelets and donating the profits to Lurie Children’s Hospital.

“It was actually in the middle of the night I came up with the idea,” said 7-year-old Hayley. “I thought of something I like to do. And I realized people like bracelets, and I love to make bracelets, so I started doing that.”

Lurie Children’s is treating coronavirus patients and has had to postpone or cancel all in-person fundraisers. A hospital spokesperson said Hayley’s donation comes at a critical time.

“Turning her passion into action during this very challenging time was an incredible thing for her to do,” said Tracey McCusker, the associate director of community engagement. “With those dollars we can help to purchase supplies, upgrade our equipment and of course respond to the rapidly changing needs of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Hayley’s bracelet campaign has already raised more than $4,000. Her mom, Lori Orlinsky, said she has completed 95 orders and created more than 400 bracelets.

“Her story caught on like wildfire, I think because people need something to believe in right now," Orlinsky said. "The bracelets are so bright and colorful and they represent hope."

Each bracelet is $3 with all of the proceeds going to Lurie Children’s Hospital. The initial goal was to raise $200, and since they have far surpassed that, they’ve set a new goal of $5,000.

“She’s made everybody really proud,” said Hayley’s mom.

Rainbow Loom, the company that makes the rubber bands Hayley uses, donated kits for her cause after hearing her story.

They company tells NBC 5 it has donated more than 1,300 PPE N95 masks to several hospitals, to help front-line doctors and nurses

Click here to learn more about Hayley’s bracelet fundraiser.

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