Beads Of Courage

Beads of Courage

Beads of Courage Canada:

Guidelines for Turned Treasure Boxes:

  1. In order to hold the beads, turned boxes for the Beads of Courage program need to be about 6 inches in diameter (5 inches minimum) and 5 inches deep (4 inches minimum).

  2. If possible, have “Beads of Courage” engraved or burned in the lid, or leave a place to insert a bead.

    The round bead sizes are: 3/4 +" with a thickness of 5/16" or  1 1/4" with a 3/16" thickness.  

    There is a rectangle bead that is 3/4" x 15/16" with a thickness of 5/16".

  3. Make sure the lids are easily removable.  Any finials should be easy for a small child to grasp and not too elaborate.

  4. Finishing: 

    Children who receive these boxes are susceptible to germs/infections/mold. Bowls that have not been properly sealed can harbor mold. Ensure you are using a safe finishing process that does not contain toxic materials. Do not use finishes like linseed or walnut oil that take a long time to outgas.  

    Do not paint Beads of Courage boxes. Instead, highlight the beauty of the wood with clear varnish, stain, and/or burning. 

  5. John (John VandenBerg, ph. 403-380-0141) has the beads to be glued on after the box is finished.  He has a limited number of them so will give them out, one per box, when you have a box ready. Contact him to request a bead. Contact our Guild president, Vern Miller (, ph.403-892-6729) if John is unavailable. 

  6. Please complete a donation form with your finished box or bowl.  You can get the forms at the Beads of Courage Canada website , or John VandenBerg will have copies of them.  

The boxes will be collected at each meeting.  They should have your name and city written on the bottom.  You can enclose a card with your name and “Chinook Woodturners” written on it. There will be cards printed for you to sign when you bring a box.

Box donation Form:


Beads of Courage is a program dedicated to children coping with serious illness by helping them to RECORD, TELL and OWN their story of COURAGE through beads.

Members of the Chinook Woodturning Guild, in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, are assisting Beads of Courage by making individually turned wooden treasure boxes and lidded bowls in which the ill children can keep and display their beads.

The Chinook Woodturning Guild is proud to support this worthwhile cause.  John VandenBerg  (, ph. 403-380-0141) is our coordinator for the program. Contact our Guild president, Vern Miller (, ph.403-892-6729) if John is unavailable.

On this page you will find pictures of the bead boxes made by our members, and links to Beads of Courage, an Instruction Sheet for making the lidded boxes and a link to the required Donation Form.

If you are interested in joining the Guild or being on our email list or getting more information, contact a Guild member or come to a Chinook Woodturning Guild meeting.


Meetings are normally held at 7pm on the 3rd Thursday of the month, September - June at CASA Arts Centre 230 – 8 Street South Lethbridge, Alberta Canada T1J 5H2