Ruth Halma of Inwood (Iowa) Christian Reformed Church has turned her love for kids and dolls into a ministry. She has refurbished more than 1,000 dolls destined for needy children overseas and in Mississippi and Kentucky.
Halma washes the dolls and dries them in the sun. Fabric softener helps with freshening and untangling hair. The dolls get a new hairdo or an extreme haircut followed by a bonnet. A fresh dress or even a new dress sewn by Halma completes the makeover. Halma’s, sister, Lenore Jongerius of First CRC in Orange City, Iowa, sews undergarments for the dolls.
Halma does not remember just when she started restoring dolls. And she does not have an accurate count on the number of dolls restored. “I just do it so some little girl gets a clean doll,” said Halma. “I think it’s a dirty shame to give them a doll that’s dirty.”