September 18, 2005
An avalanche of baby knitting
September 1, 2005
Posted by shannon at 2:55 PM | For related posts:
Fiber Lovers Unite
I got an e-mail this morning from Jason's mother:
Driving to work today I decided that I needed to make some quick baby quilts for the Hurricane refugee children arriving every hour at the Astrodome. My Quilt Organization in Houston already has mobilized a huge relief effort for the children - and will collect and distribute Baby Quilts. Although you are a knitter, I think some knitters are also quilters and I'd love to see this link put on as many BLOGS as possible today. Could you put it on yours - and know that the hours that I don't quilt the chuppah this long weekend will all be spent on a good cause!
They will also collect and distribute all kinds of clean used sheets and blankets.
Detailed information on how to donate quilts can be found by following that link, and I've included it in the "Continue reading..." section below. I apologize that I haven't had time to do even the most preliminary Google search, but does anybody know of similar efforts being organized by knitters? If so, leave information in the comments and I'll update this entry as I receive it!
Update (9:51 a.m.): Margene and Susan have started a program to encourage knitters to donate to the Red Cross. Once you donate, you can enter your name into a drawing for prizes donated by other knitters!
Update (9/2/05, 10:14 a.m.): Response to Margene and Susan's efforts have amazing. They've set up a separate "Give a Little" blog to track the amount donated to the Red Cross as well as prizes that have been donated. They've also got buttons! (Remember, save these to your own server!)
PART 2: QUILTS FOR COMFORT
Many thousands of the Katrina refugees are being sent to Houston RIGHT NOW, and no one knows how long they will have to be here. Most of them escaped the hurricane's fury with only the clothes on their backs--nothing more--and they may have absolutely nothing to go home to. They don't even know. The Astrodome is ready as temporary housing, but there is a serious shortage of bedding.
Part 2 of QUILTERS COMFORT AMERICA is the collection of quilts of all kinds to be distributed to the refugees here in Houston so that they have something soft to sleep on instead of the hard concrete floors of the temporary shelters and something warm to cover up with against the chill of otherwise welcome air-conditioning (we've been in the 90s and 100s for weeks now).
Many of us have unfinished projects filling our closets and cupboards. Get out one of those projects--twin size preferred but no smaller than baby quilt size, please--and finish it up for this. Use lightweight batting--do whatever binding is the quickest, even a close zigzag stitch. You don't have to quilt it--tie it! If you have only small projects, add borders. Think about a mother lying on the floor cradling her baby--that's the size quilt we need to provide. These quilts are not meant to be heirlooms, although they will probably be treasured for many years as a symbol of the caring of strangers. Tie them, machine quilt them, work in a group with your friends and finish several on an assembly line, do whatever it takes to get these finished quickly.
THE NEED FOR THESE QUILTS IS RIGHT NOW! If you already have some finished pieces that you don't have plans for, send them too, as long as they are no smaller than baby quilt size. If you are a professional, you may have sample quilts that have become shop-worn or faded but are still clean and very usable in an emergency--send them!--we are IN an emergency! Be sure to put a label on the back of your quilt or sign it with a kind thought and your name and date. Every piece will go to a refugee family driven from their homes by the hurricane.
To participate in QUILTERS COMFORT AMERICA, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org (subject line: COMFORT AMERICA) to let us know how many quilts you are sending. That will help us help the Red Cross in its planning. Please do not expect a confirmation that your quilt has been received or any kind of nice thank-you. Sometimes we just have to do things because they are the RIGHT things to do--this is one of those times. People need help...the kind of help WE can give.