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1 Way Your Knitting Can Help People in Need in Michigan

Love knitting mittens & want to help needy folks in the Detroit area? Look no further than Mittens for Detroit

Mittens for Detroit

Fun fact: my husband Eric hails from the great state of Michigan.

Another fun fact: when we began dating, and I asked where in Michigan he lived, he held up his hand and pointed.

I was mystified. He pretended to be devastated. (It turns out that this is a very common way for Michiganders to show what part of the state they are from. Apparently, the lower peninsula of Michigan resembles a mitten. You would think I would have noticed this.)

Okay, okay. My husband-to-be was right to be fake devastated.

Obviously, mittens and Michigan go hand-in-hand. (Or hand-in-mitten, as it were.) So it’s fitting that one of the biggest mitten charities in the United States is Mittens for Detroit.

Since 2010, Mittens for Detroit — a 501(c)(3) nonprofit — has been collecting and distributing new and unused mittens to children, teens, and adults in need.

If you love knitting mittens and live in or around Detroit, Michigan — or simply care about helping homeless and needy folks — Mittens for Detroit is a knitting charity you’ll definitely want to get involved in.

Caring for the Needy in Detroit through Mittens

The response from local yarn shops, such as long-time partner The Yarn Stop (in Clawson), has been amazing, as has the support of local knit/crochet clubs and circles.

About 1,500 pairs of handmade — knit, crocheted, and sewn — mittens every year come to Mittens for Detroit. These are offered not only from crafters locally but also all over the United States. Detroit Knitting and Crochet Club has been a partner since 2013.

For years, local retailer Leon & Lulu has sponsored and hosted the Mitten State Knit-In. This event benefits Mittens for Detroit in a celebration on Worldwide Knit in Public Day, with yarn shops and knitting groups as co-sponsors.

Mittens for Detroit urges knitters everywhere to participate and contribute to this very worthy cause. If you’re ready to step up, read on!

How You Can Help

The best way to help, of course, is to knit mittens! Mittens for Detroit will accept all new mitten donations, but they have a special need for teen- and adult-sized mittens. The need for that size is great because it includes children who wear adult sizes.

Be sure to use easy-care yarn.

Mittens for Detroit donations
Photo: Mittens for Detroit

They also ask that if you knit mittens, you attach each pair together with a piece of yarn (not safety pins), from which you may also hang a “made by” tag, if you wish. This helps keep the mittens from being separated, and also lets the mitten recipient know that someone cared enough to send them a handmade pair of mittens.

If you would like to include a secular note of encouragement, please do!

Collection of mittens runs from October 1st – January 31st., and pairs are distributed through March. You can send your mitten donations to this address:

Mittens for Detroit
Attn: Wendy Shepherd
PO Box 721427
Berkley, MI 48072

Mittens for Detroit also accepts monetary donations, which are tax-deductible; they use these to purchase mittens and to support the collection and delivery of mitten pairs. You can send financial donations to the address above, or you can donate online here.

This is the perfect organization to support if you’d love to use your love of mitten-knitting to help needy people. And if you’re a Michigander, or even a Midwestern, why not consider supporting Mittens for Detroit with your needles and yarn?

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  1. Thank you so much for all of your support, Nicole, year after year. It is greatly appreciated!!!!!
    Stay well!
    Wendy, Mittens for Detroit

  2. You are absolutely beautiful and I consider you to be my hero. Wow. Thank you for bridging knitters with needy. I believe knitters/crocheters are the most loving caring people! We love to make and give! Just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate what you do, and I love receiving your emails. ❤️💜

    1. Karen, what a sweet thing to say. Thank you!! I agree with you wholeheartedly — knitters and crocheters are the most loving and generous people I know. ❤