VILLAGE OF ELM GROVE – It’s the little things that can make the difference.

That’s what Kate Sweeney says at least.

Sweeney, the director of support services for the Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Network, was referring to the efforts of many members of the public who contribute even small doses of happiness for those battling cancer.

One group of those helpers is Operation Chemo Comfort.

This month, Operation Chemo Comfort, a West Allis-based organization with the mission of providing comfort goods and services to patients who have been affected by cancer, will team up with Elm Grove’s Patched Works, Inc. to gift some literal and figurative warmth to those patients that Sweeney sees every day.

“We’re having a blowout 12-hour sewathon at Patched Works,” Operation Chemo Comfort co-founder Carrie O’Connor said.

The sewathon will operate from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, April 29 with the goal of providing at least 500 head scarves to patients throughout the Froedtert cancer network.

“I had been approached by Carrie last year to participate and we were very interested in the cause,” Patched Works owner Julie Karasek said.

Last year Chemo Comfort hosted a 3-hour sewathon with approximately a dozen volunteers, but this year they’ve upped their game.

“This sewathon we’re having is going to have 15 people per shift for 12 hours and we’re encouraging people to come from all different levels,” O’Connor said. “Even people who don’t sew are welcome, they can iron or help out in other ways.”

O’Connor and Karasek both count themselves among the long list of people who have had loved ones affected by cancer.

“My mom was a patient of the Froedtert Cancer Center and so it’s an organization that’s close to me and to the community and they do great work,” Karasek said.

Patched Works, 13330 Watertown Plank Road, will be supplying all fabric for the event.

Volunteers interested in signing up for a shift at the sewathon can go to http://signup.com/go/cnTG9t. Each shift is two hours long.

“It’s so great to see people who support our patients and it’s so nice to see what the patients get out of it,” Sweeney said. “It’s a really difficult time in their lives, but it’s just a little something that can often give them a little smile on their faces.”

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