A plethora of charities to sew for in no discernible order:
Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative
The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) is an Internet-driven, grassroots, totally volunteer effort to raise awareness and fund research through art. We are a Michigan nonprofit corporation with tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS code. All profit is used to fund Alzheimer’s research. Since the AAQI began we have raised more than $157,000 for Alzheimer’s research.
AZ Blankets 4 Kids
AZ Blankets 4 Kids is an all-volunteer non-profit organization serving children in need in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Our goal is to provide comforting blankets and quilts to needy, seriously ill and traumatized children in our community.
What Kind of Blankets?
AZ Blankets 4 Kids welcomes all handmade blankets. Whether you knit, crochet, quilt, hand sew or machine sew — we welcome your donation. Blankets range in size from 16×16 for preemies at the hospital, to 40×60 for older children. Fabrics should be washable and in child-friendly fabrics and colors. Your TLC will mean so much to a child in need.
God’s Tiny Angels
Two things contributed to the start of God’s Tiny Angels: the gift of crochet and the need to help babies in need. We are currently donating items to several hospitals. Donations of preemie and newborn items are needed. We accept handmade, store-bought or gently used items. If you would like to help in a different way then please consider donating 1 or 2 skeins of yarn. One 8 ounce skein can be made up into a small blanket and hat to warm a Preemie baby.
Project Linus Greater Twin Cities MN
We are part of the national Project Linus organization. We serve the Twin Cities area of Minnesota. Project Linus gathers new hand-made, kid-friendly blankets and distributes them to local hospitals for ill children. These ‘Hugs’ provide encouragement to children and teens experiencing a stay in the hospital. Our chapter was established July 2006. We serve the Twin Cities metro area with our chapter. If you’re looking for a chapter in another part of MN or different state please take a look at our national website for Project Linus.
Project Linus National Headquarters
Project Linus has been working with representatives from Congress and the Consumer Product Safety Commission for clarification of how the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act may or may not affect our charity and others. We know that our specific circumstances are under discussion at this time. We do not anticipate that the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act will have a significant impact on our organization or its mission. We will continue to monitor this situation very closely and provide updates as necessary.
The Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Quilt Project, Inc.
The Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Quilt Project was created to promote greater public awareness of Congenital Heart Defects (CHD), while honoring the strength, courage, and commitment of all those born with a CHD and their families.
The Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Quilts are a series of quilts, with each quilt honoring 42 individuals with CHD. The quilts are being constructed of heart blocks, with each block being dedicated to a child or adult effected by Congenital Heart Defects.
Sew Special Inc.
The energetic Eunice Sprung has organized a group of women who sew kimonos, sleepers, caps, receiving blankets, quilts, and quilt covers for isolettes. Items are given to babies in newborn intensive care units.
How you can help: Eunice gratefully accepts donations of cotton or cotton/polyester knits, interlocks, flannels, fleeces, and velours as well as buttons laces, ribbings, and thread. Cash donations for the purchase of supplies are also welcome. Non-profit organization.
Sew Special, Inc.
14077 477th Avenue
Corona SD 57227-8233
Newborns In Need
Newborns in Need, founded by busy mom Carol Green, makes and donates baby gowns, blankets, and other essential baby items to hospitals, homeless shelters, and other organizations that provide for premature and newborn infants.
How you can help: The Newborns In Need website will help you find a local chapter so you can determine specific needs in your area.
To order patterns for cancer patient head covering contact:
4421 Blackberry Court
Klamath Falls OR 97603-8069
Molly Stanley, along with her brother Andrew and local organizations, makes roll-up toiletry kits for teen, women’s, and homeless shelters, and the Red Cross. Care Cloths are made from a washcloth folded and stitched to form pockets. The pockets are filled with sample size shampoo, soap, toothpaste, deodorant and the like, plus disposable razors and toothbrushes. Cloths are then rolled and tied with a ribbon.
How you can help: Molly recommends this project for 4-H and similar youth and leadership groups or sewing classes. She often uses this project to teach beginning stitchers. Molly’s group needs donations of washcloths and sample size toiletries—especially toothpaste and toothbrushes.
108 Hays Hill Road
Conway AR 72032
Sew Tiny Angels
Cheryl Henry is a one-woman baby-dressing army. She uses her sewing and knitting skills to make clothing and quilts for premature babies at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. Some of her creations even feature the University’s cornhusker mascot.
How you can help: Cheryl appreciates new fabric, batting, thread and sewing notions. She suggests that anyone interested in taking on a similar project contact local hospital(s) to clarify needs. To sew for premature infants, Cheryl uses patterns for 15″ dolls.
4930 E. 8th St.
Columbus NE 68601-1613
Currently Vallie is hard at work, as usual, on several projects at once. She is making baby and children’s quilts along with children’s clothes including dresses, T-shirts, pull-on pants, plus pajamas and nightgowns, all for her local Head Start program. She and a friend also make dolls, bibs, and stuffed animals for the children’s hospital. Plus, quilts for Baptist Children’s Homes, Methodist Children’s Homes, and The Women’s Shelter.
How you can help: Vallie enjoys finding creative things to make using new fabric, batting, thread and sewing notions. Since many of her items are for children, bright colors and patterns are especially cheerful for kids.
119 Miller St.
Fayetteville AR 72703
Sharon and Keith Kerssen & the Colina de Luz Orphanage
Sharon and Keith teach sewing to students and families living in or near this Mexican orphanage. Keith, “Mr. Fix It,” also repairs donated sewing machines making them usable for classes there.
How you can help: Sharon and Keith can use fabric and sewing notions. If you have a large donation of items, please contact the Kerssens for another address BEFORE sending. The Kerssens can also use donated sewing machines, but please contact them BEFORE sending. Cash donations for the purchase of supplies are also welcome.
Sharon and Keith Kerssen
20 W. Marie Avenue
West St. Paul MN 55118
Linus Quilt Project (I’ll drop this hint many a time)
Project Linus provides blankets for seriously ill or traumatized children ranging in age from neonatal to young adult. New blankets can be crocheted, knit, quilted, or sewn and must be washable. There are about 350 Project Linus chapters in the United States.
How you can help: Contact your nearest Project Linus chapter to determine specific needs in your area.
Pacific Fabric & Crafts
2230 4th Avenue South
Seattle WA 98134
PO Box 5621
Bloomington IL 61702-5621
My Brother’s Keeper (Ugly Quilts)
My Brother’s Keeper is comprised of individuals and groups who desire to help the homeless by making simple sleeping bags, called “Ugly Quilts”, from recycled fabrics (including men’s ties) and distributing them free to people who live on the street and are cold.
How you can help: Request a free Ugly Quilt pattern by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope and small donation to cover printing to the address below. Complete dimensions and instructions are also included in Creative Kindness. Marlene’s group in Iowa welcomes donations of yarn, thread, blankets, fabric and neckties, as well as completed Ugly Quilts. Marlene also suggests that you contact homeless shelters in your area.
210 Q Avenue
Milford IA 51351
Open Your Heart to Haiti
Dedicated members of the Rhinelander, Wisconsin Retired Seniors Volunteer Program (RSVP) make school uniforms for boys and girls in Haiti. Children in Haiti are not allowed to attend school or eat school lunches without these specific uniforms.
How you can help: The Haitian government has specific requirements for both boys’ and girls’ uniforms. (Important note: This information can change, so PLEASE contact RSVP, listed below, before beginning your project.)
For the girls’ jumper design, email Lorijays@hotmail.com for current pattern. For those who have made the girls’ jumper in the past from the Simplicity 5900 pattern, please send that pattern to Lori at the address below. They would like to recycle as many patterns as they can for future use! Pockets are optional, but lace, trim and appliqués are not permitted. Sizes can range from Toddler 2 to Misses 12 (the smallest and largest are most needed).
Boys’ uniforms must include any pattern that has an elastic waist. Sizes can range from Toddler 3 to Boys 14.
Khaki fabric has been donated to make the boys and girls uniforms. Please contact Lori using the contact information below. She will send fabric to anyone interested in sewing the uniforms. You will need to provide matching thread and sewing supplies. Cash donations for the purchase of supplies are also welcome.
RSVP Center (Retired Seniors Volunteer Program)
c/o Open Your Heart to Haiti
1835 North Stevens Street
Rhinelander WI 54501
Creative Kindness Knows No Walls
To get involved in teaching in or donating to a correctional facility, contact your state’s Department of Corrections. Be sure to obtain prior approval before sending any donation.
How you can help: To make a donation of materials to either of the facilities showcased in our book chapter “Creative Kindness Knows No Walls”, p. 69, please refer to the contacts below. Your concern for these often overlooked people, and their causes, will be sincerely appreciated.
Preston Youth Correctional Facility
Attn: Anita Hatfield
201 Waterman Road
Ione CA 95640
Circle of Women
The Circle of Women makes twin, full, lap, and baby quilts for the Rosebud Reservation, South Dakota, as well as teaching quiltmaking to classes there. See how far a $20 donation will go when you read about these enterprising quilters (p. 82).
How you can help: This group needs donations of quiltmaking supplies including fabric, batting thread, cutters, rulers. They will also accept pieced quilt tops to be finished. Cash donations for the purchase of supplies are also welcome.
413 North Milnor Lake Rd.
Troy MT 59935
Rosie’s Calico Cupboard Quilt Shop/Camp Reach For The Sky
Each year the San Diego-area American Cancer Society hosts camps for kids battling cancer. Rosie Gonzalez organizes school kids, quilt groups, guilds, and individuals to make twin-size quilts that are donated to the campers. As they go through treatment, these special kids can hang onto their quilts as a reminder of their happy camping days.
How you can help: The group gladly accepts quilt blocks, twin or larger quilt tops, and completed new quilts. Or donate quilt fabric and/or batting. Finished quilts must be twin or larger, machine quilted, and bound for stability. Rosie also needs “long arm quilters” who can help with machine quilting (and provide shipping costs, if necessary). Anyone in the San Diego area is invited to join the group’s sew-a-thon, where there are jobs for non-sewers, too.
Rosie’s Calico Cupboard Quilt Shop
7151 El Cajon Blvd. Suite F
San Diego CA 92115
Loving Hands Quilts
Volunteers make cheerful 45″ x 60″ quilts carried in every Missouri Highway Patrol car. The quilts, and the love stitched in, comfort children involved in accidents or trauma situations.
How you can help: This is a statewide project in Missouri; their team leaders welcome your support. Or, you can contact your state or local police and ask about providing quilts and/or stuffed animals. Loving Hands can use volunteers to piece, quilt or tie, or donate quilt tops for finishing. They also welcome donations of cotton fabric, batting, and new flat sheets (for quilt backing).
Verda Campbell, a cancer suvivor and sewing whirlwind, makes “comfort pillows” for people recovering from mastectomies. She also helps volunteer groups start their own comfort projects.
How you can help: Verda needs donations of all supplies, including cotton batiste, thread, batting, ribbon, eyelet. She is also looking for volunteers to sew or organize fundraisers. Cash donations for purchase of supplies are also welcome.
10744 Timber Pine Ct
N. Fort Myers, FL 33903
In memory of her mother, Lou, who bravely battled lung cancer, Gaye Kriegel designed her Comfort Kerchief for women going through chemotherapy and suffering from hair loss. Gaye’s practical and attractive Kerchief was one of the first projects featured on Sew A Smile and without doubt, the one that drew the most audience response. The Comfort Kerchief is also the first story on the Creative Kindness website—get ready to be inspired by Gaye’s determination, generosity and commitment.
How you can help: Gaye will be happy to send you a pattern. Please send:
$2 (cash or check) to cover printing and postage,
An address label, and
A check payable to the American Cancer Society for a minimum $5 donation.
Attn: Comfort Kerchief/Creative Kindness
11313 Monet Drive
Austin TX 78726
Dress An Angel
Ruthe Brown makes hospital gowns, burial garments, quilts, and neonatal nests for newborn intensive care units. Although confined to a wheelchair, nothing stops Ruthe when it comes to making sure needy babies have warm clothes and bedding, all made with loving hands.
How you can help: Ruthe suggests that you contact Newborn ICUs in local hospitals. For patterns, please send Ruthe a small donation of $2 to $5 to cover pattern costs, plus a self-addressed mailing label and First Class stamp.
24135 E. Navajo Trail
Benson AZ 85602
American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society sponsors a wide variety of activities and events to support the fight against cancer.
American Cancer Society
Staffed 24 hours a day/7 days a week including holidays. Operators will help you locate the office closest to you.
Staffed Monday through Friday 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
American Red Cross
The Red Cross works to help keep people safe—every day as well as in an emergency—and relies on both staff and volunteers to support their ongoing work.
American Red Cross
Attn: Public Inquiry Office
2025 E St. NW
Washington DC 20006
American Sewing Guild
The American Sewing Guild is a nonprofit organization with Chapters and Neighborhood Groups nationwide. Its mission is to Advance Sewing as an Art and a Life Skill. ASG has become synonymous with sewing acts of kindness through its community service sewing projects.
American Sewing Guild Association Headquarters
9660 Hillcroft, Suite 510
Houston TX 77096
Care Wear is a nationwide group of volunteers who knit, crochet, and/or sew handmade baby items for hospitals. All Care Wear items are given free to infants, children, and their parents. Care Wear provides many free patterns on its website. Volunteers are asked to contact local hospitals in their areas to learn specific needs. Their hospital list has 500+ sites requesting donated items.
Care Wear Volunteers, Inc.
c/o Hood College
410 Rosemont Avenue
Frederick MD 21701
Quilters can find a quilt guild nearby (including Canada), charity quilt groups, and other excellent information on http://www.quiltchannel.com, or contact the group listed here.
National Quilting Association
1347 W Fifth Ave. Ste 204
PO Box 12190
Columbus OH 43212
Ronald McDonald House
Ronald McDonald Houses provide a “home away from home” for the families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at nearby hospitals. There are currently 254 houses in 28 countries. Each house is run by a local non-profit organization composed of members of the medical community, business and civic leaders, parent volunteers, and McDonald’s franchises. They accept donations of quilts, blankets, and cuddle toys.
The Ronald McDonald House Charities
One Kroc Drive
Oak Brook IL 60523
RSVP/Youth In Service To America
RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program) and Youth In Service to America are both part of the Corporation for National Service.
Corporation for National Service
1201 New York Avenue NW
Washington DC 20525
web site: www.nationalservice.org
Youth in Service to America
1101 15th Street
Washington DC 20005
web site: www.ysa.org
Warm Up America
Warm Up America is a project of the Craft Yarn Council of America. Volunteers crochet or knit 7″ x 9″ rectangles that are joined in groups of 49 rectangles to make a full size afghan of many colors and textures. These are then distributed to social service agencies. An excellent project for kids’ groups.
How you can help—This group needs donations of quiltmaking supplies including fabric, batting, thread, cutters, and rulers. They will also accept pieced quilt tops to be finished. Cash donations for purchase of supplies are also welcome.
The Wisconsin Warmers started in 1995, as a way to help those in need. The group mainly makes quilts and lap robes, but also creates tote bags, Christmas stockings, afghans, hats and pillows. Most of the items stay in the local area, but recently 60 quilts were sent to the Katrina Flood Victims. There are 30 ladies who regularly participate in the weekly activity.
How you can help: Peggy and her volunteers can use new fabric, quilt batting, thread, and yarn as well as items made by other groups which they can then distribute. Cash donations for the purchase of supplies are also welcome.
% Oshkosh Seniors Center 200 North Campbell
Oshkosh WI 54902
The Smocking Arts Guild of America
The Smocking Arts Guild of America sponsors projects all over the USA. Members and volunteers make Wee Care smocked baby gowns for hospitals to give to parents of premature or sick newborns. Anyone interested in making these tiny smocked gowns should contact their nearest local guild.
The Smocking Arts Guild of America
P.O. Box 214
Hathorne MA 01937-0214
Threads of Love
Threads of Love is a non-profit sewing ministry founded to meet the spiritual, emotional and clothing needs of premature infants and young children with health problems. Based in Baton Rouge, LA, the organization works with hospitals and focusses on helping parents at times of concern over their baby’s health or during a time of sorrow over the loss of a child. With chapters in 21 states, members of Threads of Love make caps, gowns, booties, blankets, and whatever is needed including burial gowns. They are looking for people to sew, quilt, knit, and crochet for these little ones.
Sissy Davis, Director
Threads of Love
First Presbyterian Church
PO Box 2006
Baton Rouge LA 70821
Lea Lakeside-Scott can look into the eyes of a discarded, broken doll and see the face of hope. She started Hope Dolls in April 2000. Its mission is to create a support network that reaches out to abused and needy children, and to women in correctional facilities. Lea gathers used, tattered, cast off dolls. The ladies in detention clean, repair and dress the dolls in new clothes they make themselves. Then the dolls are delivered to children in shelters, mental health facilities, and housing projects. The dolls get loving homes and the children get a special friend to help ease their loneliness and fear. You can be a “doll” by donating dolls, clothing, fabrics for making clothing, and doll accessories to Lea’s organization.
4926 SE Division St
Portand OR 97206
Blankets of Belief
We want them to know that they are remembered, that we are thinking of them, and that we are grateful for their service. Since we can’t wrap our arms around them in person to show how much we love and appreciate them, our goal is to wrap all 180,000 of our deployed service members in blankets representative of our support and faith in them, Blankets of Belief. The Blankets will be a physical reminder that they are not alone during the Holidays. When deployed service members receive a Blanket of Belief, they will know that somebody back home remembered them, that somebody labored over a handmade blanket with thoughts of them and hopes or prayers for their strength and comfort.
Blankets of Gratitude
We want them to know that they are remembered, that we are thinking of them, and that we are grateful for their past service. Since we can’t visit them all in person, our goal is to wrap 25,000 of these Veterans in lap robes, representative of our support and appreciation, called “Blankets of Gratitude.” The lap robes will be a physical reminder that they are not alone. When a veteran receives a Blanket of Gratitude, he or she will know that somebody remembered them, that somebody labored over a handmade robe with thoughts of them and hopes or prayers for their health and comfort.
Blankets of Hope
The Blankets of Hope team creates unique, handmade blankets to send hope, support and gratitude to America’s wounded and veterans. Used on hospital beds, wheelchairs, and transport litters on medevac flights, Blankets of Hope bring the message that each servicemember is loved and not forgotten. They are included in our First Response Backpacks and Vet Packs sent to Combat Support Hospitals in the war zones, major medical facilities in Germany and around the world, and selected military hospitals and veterans centers here at home.