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York College student wants to give Covers for Comfort

Jessica Schladebeck
505-5438/@JessDispatch

York College sophomore Blair Hagelgans knows how much a gift during a hospital stay can lift one's spirits.

Covers for Comfort is a campaign intended to create tie fleece blankets for children in neurosurgery and long-term epilepsy monitoring units.

In 2009, the now-19-year-old was diagnosed with epilepsy, and she had endured complex partial seizures two years before her diagnosis. Hagelgans has undergone two laser ablation brain surgeries for her epilepsy and still experiences other neurological and spinal cord conditions.

"I have been in and out of hospitals my whole life and know what it is like when people you don't even know come in to visit you and give you something as small as a blanket," she said.

And that's why Hagelgans, as a member of the York College chapter of Public Relations Student Society of America, is teaming up with Epilepsy Foundation of Eastern PA  for a campaign called Covers for Comfort.

All money raised will go toward Hagelgan’s campaign, which is intended to create tie fleece blankets for children in neurosurgery and long-term epilepsy monitoring.

"These kids go through so much, and I want them to know that they are not alone in their fight, and I wanted to give back," she said on her fundraising page.

Students from the chapter will accept donations in the Robert V. Iosue Student Union between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. daily the week of April 4-8, and students, faculty, staff and community members are welcome to stop by to learn more about the fundraiser.

"York College PRSSA enjoys working with other groups to achieve the best results for our projects and events," said PRSSA past president Justin Walker in a news release. "Whether they're on or off campus, it's nice to make connections with whatever we do."

Online donations can be made at www.crowdrise.com/coversforcomfort, and Hagelgans has a goal of raising $1,000.

“Growing up with epilepsy and many other neurological and spinal conditions inspired me to give back and help find a cure,” Hagelgans said. “I think it is important to spread awareness about epilepsy to help improve the lives of those it affects.”

— Reach Jessica Schladebeck at jschladebeck@yorkdispatch.com.