J’Adore Tuesdays: Giving Artfully

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“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of ‘disaster,’ I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.” – Fred Rogers

Monday was an emotional day. My heart is reaching out to all those affected in the Boston Marathon explosions. It doesn’t matter who did it. The point is people died, including a child, and many others were hurt. Now is the time to reach out with compassion and love. We have to be, as Fred Rogers says, one of the helpers.

We don’t have to wait for tragedy or disaster or violence to hit to reach out and be a helper, which is why I was really excited when I heard about Giving Artfully from Sitinee, the site’s creator. According to the site, she created Giving Artfully as a way to help crafters find causes they can help with, make things for. A lot of times, charities and causes are mentioned in blog posts, which is a great way to get the word out, but it’s not always easy to find all the details. She saw a need to simplify the volunteer process, gathering all the details into one easy-to-access location.

What I really like about the site is how organized it is. You can search by skill set (knitting/crocheting, sewing, other), charity type (bereaving parents, military families, orphanages, etc.), by general location, and by project type (blankets, hats, etc.). I really appreciate that each charity on the website shows a breakdown of how many of a certain item is needed and how many have been received so far. That way, you can really see where the need is.

I’ve been wanting to participate more in charity knitting lately, so I will definitely be using this site as well as making hats for our local hospital. I tend to give most of my knits away when I’m finished anyway, doesn’t matter how intricate or basic. Why not find a real need for those things I don’t keep? The one for Bereaving Parents, Elephant Tears, really struck a chord with me. I’m thinking I may work on small blankets for that one.

Have you tried Giving Artfully? If so, I’d love to hear about your experiences with it. Or, do you craft for other charities? I’d love to hear about that too!

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18 thoughts on “J’Adore Tuesdays: Giving Artfully

  1. I only heard this morning about what happened yesterday. It is terrible, and you are right: For a lot of people, it doesn’t matter who placed the bombs. But it matters that a lot of people are hurt, traumatised and scared. I am so sorry and will be thinking about them a lot during the next days …

    ~ ~ ~
    Last year, one of our local yarn shops was hosting a charity event for our local food bank. I knit a pair of socks, a pair of baby socks and two small hats – and when I handed them in, the shop owner told me that they had recieved three huge boxes full of beautiful knitwear and crocheted items. I really hope they are doing this again this year – if yes, I already made a couple of small items and am more than willing to share them.

  2. Last October I made just over 70 crochet poppies for Poppy Day (Remembrance Day) which is the day that The Royal British Legion (supporting soldiers and their families) usually sells poppy pins for charity. They looked nice and were “sold out” in 48 hours. I raised a heap of money for the British Legion and still feeling the glow. Thinking of felting some for this year’s event….

  3. Thank you for posting this. I live in the Boston area, I can say that this is awful and unbelievable. The only positive, for me, is seeing news coverage of first-responders running towards the blasts and tearing down barricades to get to the injured. They didn’t hesitate to help. Many people survived thanks to the quick actions of medical personnel and other spectators who jumped in to offer assistance.

  4. Thanks for letting us know about “Artfully Giving.” I participate in a Prayer Quilt Ministry at our church every Wednesday. We make lap-sized tied machine pieced quilts that are blessed for those in our parish that are sick or dying. We make about 200 each year and it is a tangible way to let the recipients know that we pray for them. I think “Artfully Giving” is the same concept.

  5. A group of friends have started a Prayer Shawl ministry group at my church. The shawls will be prayerfully knit and crocheted, prayed over by our clergy, and given to anyone in need…those on hospice, those in hospital or nursing home care, those who might be depressesd…..anyone who needs to feel hugged by prayer.

  6. Pingback: Giving Artfully | Peace, Love & Knitting

  7. Great post. Love the idea of a place where crafters can come together and use their talents to help those in need. Thanks so much for sharing.

  8. Nicely chosen quote to introduce your post! I like how you phrased acts of compassion and love within a solution of helping. Thanks for bringing the charity to my attention!

  9. I remember reading a story about a child who was frightened by the loud sirens of ambulances, fire trucks, etc. The mother helped him by teaching him that what he heard was the sound of people rushing to help; a positive thing! I loved it and taught my sons the same thing.

    This is a great site and I have added a link on my blog, along with a post. Hope that helps. ~ Linne

  10. I have done a couple of projects for Craft Hope (Project 17, 20 and I’m hoping to do 21) and recently finished a quilt for Quilts for Kids. I haven’t tried Giving Artfully, but it looks like a great site that’s well organized. I’ve enjoyed the charity work I’ve done so far and this site looks like a good resource to help me meet my goal of participating in six charity projects this year!

  11. I loved Fred Rogers. He was a great man. So wise and compassionate.

    I don’t have any artistic skill other than writing, so I volunteer my efforts at places like Dave Eggers’ organization, 826 Valencia. My husband and son gave me a sewing machine as a gift, so I plan to learn how to use it soon.

    The one time I knit something for my father, I was probably about nine. It turned out to be a very irregular-shaped wool scarf. He wore it until it fell apart, never failing to tell me how warm it kept his neck in wintertime. Thank you for bringing back that memory.

    Giving creatively is such a good feeling, but we often forget that appreciation and compassion can be viewed as creative gifts, too.

    Thank you for visiting the Dogpatch Writers Collective!

  12. Pingback: What are others saying about Giving Artfully? | Giving Artfully

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