There are many reasons a simple scarf has touched Dolores Lowell so deeply.

A resident of Good Samaritan Society’s New Hope location, Lowell will use the scarf to keep warm, of course, but she’ll also use it to look great. Its mauve material matches her coat perfectly — so much so she was able to bypass her favorite color, purple. Most of all, the scarf hits home with Lowell because the person who made it and donated numerous to the facility’s residents is a breast cancer survivor.

“I lost a sister to breast cancer, so this means a lot to me,” Lowell said.

Scarf maker Judy Peluf is so thankful for the personal volunteer help she got during her successful battle with breast cancer a decade ago, she’s been using her knitting and crocheting skills to help others ever since. 

Peluf has been making and delivering her scarves to various causes since her victory. This year, she sought a new place to donate to and her son’s girlfriend, one of two social workers at Good Sam-New Hope, suggested the 77-bed location.

New Hope Administrator Anna Minske said staff labeled the scarves with residents’ names and handed them out Christmas week. These are the types of unexpected pleasures that all administrators should get to experience, Minske said.

“It definitely put smiles on [residents’] faces,” she recalled. “It was a happy event.”

Peluf’s included a handwritten note for each scarf that said:

“I hope you enjoy wearing this as much as I enjoyed making it for you. Stay warm. Judy.”

During the pandemic, Peluf also has made more than 300 fabric masks to donate to anyone in need. Although recipients of her goodwill, including Lowell and Minske, are making sure to send heartfelt thank-you notes, Peluf said it isn’t necessary.

“It’s my way of giving to others and that’s enough for me,” she explained to McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. “I’m grateful that I have learned skills that can help other people and keep me doing what I love to do.”