About Us

Project Valentine’s mission is to make life a “little sweeter” for individuals undergoing cancer treatment in the Denver metro area. Since 2002, our generous volunteers and contributors have created or donated items for hundreds of care packages. These care packages are lovingly assembled and hand-delivered each year to men, women and children undergoing cancer treatment on or around Valentine’s Day.

Project Valentine is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

A Letter From Our President

Project Valentine 2016

Below is what former secretary Sarah Utzig had to say about it.

Thousands of donations.
511 care package recipients.
364 days of preparation.
17 infusion centers.
14 years and going strong.
0 words for our appreciation.

You said it Sarah! Words cannot say how appreciative we are to do this. It truly was our smoothest year ever. There was a great rhythm and energy that we all seemed to pass on to each other. The one glitch we had came out perfectly, and of course we all attributed it to Colleen, our founder, who looks after us from above, for putting things right. We meet at a little place called Hansen’s after our Assembly Days. We started planning for next year right away from notes made during the day on how we can improve. As we planned we also talked about all the great volunteers we had this year, and some of the amazing stories that came to us.

We had a few people arrive that were past recipients of our care packages. One young girl was so excited to be there. In her words “As a recipient last year I worked my butt off to be here today with donations.” It was wonderful for the whole crowd to hear her story.

This year I reached out to my offices in the U.S. on our global bulletin board. We had valentines come from Portland, Phoenix, Atlanta, and Dallas. I hope to get an even bigger response next year.

One of the best things to happen to us this year was to be adopted by Bromwell Elementary’s Valentine Program. Each year the children make valentines and sell them to raise money. Not only did they make valentines to sell, they made valentines for us and donated their proceeds. Many of the parents brought their children to help with assembly. A good time had by all.

We also had many hand crafted items from youth and church groups around Colorado and Utah. It was like Christmas getting those packages. Jewelry, scarves and hats that were knit and crocheted, pillowcases in a beautiful array of prints, all made with love. Many of them are posted on our Facebook page. Thank you to all you gifted and wonderful crafters.

All this is good now, but we were in serious worry October until Inventory Day. We all try to remind each other that “Colleen would not want us to worry.” It’s a mantra we have said over the years. Valentine’s Day showed all the smiles and appreciation from the patients having infusions, and on our Facebook page the thank you notes have started.

Above is all the good of Project Valentine, the happiness of it, but there is a serious, sad part. As I write this, someone dear to me is having a biopsy done. They have to wait until Wednesday for results. We put lots of love and happiness in our care packages, but we are also thinking of the waiting, the side effects, the worry, the stress, the change in yours, or your loved ones life and our hearts are there with you. We take all of that seriously, and do not take putting our care packages together frivolously. We truly do hope that you … Embrace Life, Have Faith, and Keep Hope Alive.

Fondly,

Rita Sokolowski
President, Project Valentine

Project Valentine Board Members

Board of Directors

Rita Sokolowski – President
Peter Hoselton – Vice President/Corporate Sponsorships
Quentin Blakeslee – Treasurer

Chairs

Donna Singer – Delivery Coordinator

Board Members

Karen Ratterman

angelcolleen

About Project Valentine Founder Colleen Anderson

Colleen Anderson was diagnosed with stage three ovarian cancer in February of 2002 and immediately started an arduous schedule of chemotherapy. Colleen decided that she wanted to make a positive difference in her community of fellow cancer patients.  She made it her mission to put a smile on the faces of individuals going through cancer treatment – and did so by organizing the delivery of over 400 care packages on or near Valentine’s Day.

Colleen won the 9 Who Care Award for this project in March of 2006, recognizing her outstanding contribution to the community. Sadly, Colleen passed away during the summer of 2007. Today Project Valentine is run by dedicated volunteers – some who knew Colleen and others who were simply inspired to keep Colleen’s vision alive.