There are many ways that you can use your sewing for the benefit of others, but if you need some concrete suggestions for charities that are specifically looking for handmade items, here are just a few that I've rounded up.
- Project Linus collects handmade blankets (and you can knit or crochet them, too!) for children in need and distributes them through hospitals, shelters, or other agencies. They have donation sites and chapters throughout the US, so find one near you!
- If a whole blanket is too intimidatingly large for you (or if shipping is prohibitous), try making a fun, colorful pillowcase for a child with cancer. I think I might go this route, since I've got plenty of novelty print sheet remnants that are perfect for kids!
- If you're all, I hate sewing endless straight seams, you can make a softie for Cuddlies for Foster Kids. They're based in Washington state, but you can mail them your items.
- If you are in possession of very small scraps, you can still make them into something comforting with the Comfort Doll Project. This is the one program I could find that didn't involve children, so if for some reason you hate kids but still love adults, this one's for you!
The good thing about these programs is that they run year-round, unlike Operation Christmas Child or other seasonally-based drives, so if you don't get your act together this month (or even this year!), you can still contribute at a later date when you're more able. And of course, feel free to look up charities in your own area or for causes close to your heart -- I'm thinking socks for military service members (it's Veterans' Day, after all!), pet beds for shelters, or some other need that you see -- the goal is just to sew something. And since this is a challenge, we'll have a link party at the end of the month where you can show off your work and we'll pick a winner to get some goodies!
Do any of you know of other charities that will accept our handmade goods? Let us know in the comments!