Your Blueprint for Getting Handknits to People Who Need Them: Knitters and Crocheters Care
Do you have too many handknits and not enough people who need them? Knitters and Crocheters Care, serving DC, Maryland, and Virginia, can show you a way forward
“I’m not a great knitter, but I love to knit and crochet. I do basic scarves and small blankets. I want to contribute something to keep people warmer.”
“Nobody to knit for, but there must be people that need hats, mittens, etc. I love knitting and crocheting, and I need something to keep my mind occupied.”
“I’ve always loved knitting and crocheting, but my family doesn’t want or need anything knitted, so I would like to knit for charity. I need ideas!”
Do any of these sound like something you might say?
All of these quotations came from the many emails I receive from people who sign up for the Knitting Nuggets Newsletter. It’s clear that so many people all over the world love to knit and/or crochet, have run out of people to knit for, and want to use their skills and hobbies to help people in need.
The biggest problem seems to be, who will actually use what I knit?
Since I began writing for this website and for the newsletter, my motto has been this: There’s someone who needs what you love to knit. And I believe this from the bottom of my heart. No matter what you enjoy knitting, there’s someone out there who needs it.
One thing you can do, if you find yourself in this predicament, is to sign up to receive my free guide called “How to Get Your Handknits to Local People in Need.” You can sign up to receive that guide right here:
This guide is a wonderful starting point. But in time, you may want to join with other like-minded knitters and crocheters.
Knitters and Crocheters Care is one charitable organization that began in exactly this way!
How Knitters and Crocheters Care Brought Their Talents Together to Create Change
Claire Wadowsky and Michelle Strange started Knitters and Crocheters Care back in 2007. The avid fiber crafters wanted to bring together knitters and crocheters from the entire Washington D.C./Maryland/Virginia region. They believed they weren’t alone in their desire to craft for charity.
And boy, were they right!
In the beginning, they taught knitting and crochet at a military survivor seminar over a Memorial Day weekend. From there, they began gathering others to knit and crochet together, and they also held drives to collect items for home and for warmth (things like pot holders, scarves, and hats) to provide for people in need.
As more knitters joined in to knit and crochet together, the charities they created for also grew.
In 2008, Claire started a Ravelry group, and that became the group’s headquarters. They have continued to offer a thriving community, both virtually and in person, ever since!
Not only does the group make and distribute handmade items to local charities, but they also accept donations of yarn and supplies to offer to anyone who needs them.
How You Can Help Knitters and Crocheters Care
If you live in the DC/Maryland/Virginia area, I would highly suggest you begin attending their meetings if you can! On their Ravelry group, you’ll find information about the locations and times when the gatherings take place.
As of this writing, the group meets at least 4 times a month (and sometimes as many as 8!).
Can’t attend their meetings? No worries; you can easily keep track of the goings-on of the group, including what they’re making and who they’re donating to, on the Ravelry group. Be sure and send a private message to the group administrator ClaireLeah (a link to her profile is at the bottom of the page) for mailing information.
What I love about this group is that they truly embody the spirit of my motto, “There’s someone who needs what you love to knit.” They encourage their members to create whatever they love to make, as long as they’re made with love. With the many charities they find to donate to, you can be assured it will find a home with someone in need.
But I Don’t Live in DC or Maryland or Virginia…
You can still take and apply the spirit of Knitters and Crocheters Care!
First, use my free guide to find a place locally to donate your creations.
Then, see if you can find some like-minded knitters and/or crocheters who would like to join you. LoveCrafts has a wonderful article with suggestions on how you can find like-minded knitters or crocheters–and then make plans to gather together!
(Don’t forget to take a look at my blog post to keep on good terms with your knitting/crochet gathering place.)
If you’ve tried everything but can’t seem to find a way to gather folks to knit or crochet with you–or if you have physical challenges that preclude gathering in person? Try a virtual knitalong! You can create one yourself (this post from Little Red Window offers terrific ideas) or join one.
Jayna Zweiman of Welcome Blanket Project hosts a virtual craftalong on the second Tuesday of every month! You can sign up for her newsletter here and receive notifications so that you can register.
Now you know how to join in with knitters and crocheters who love to create for others–whether you live in the DC/Maryland/Viriginia area or not!
Click here to sign up for my free email course, Getting Started with Charity Knitting, and subscribe to the free Knitting Nuggets Newsletter.
Is there a contact person for Cumberland MD?
Sorry, Jeanette, I don’t know. That’s probably a question you would need to ask of the group moderator.
I have some items I would like to contribute. Baby hats, blankets and sweaters. Who do I send these items to?
Hello Sherri! Best thing to do is to join Ravelry (if you haven’t already) and go to the group linked to in this article. They will help you proceed!
I have a large amount of yarn and needles I would like to donate. Where in the DMV can I do this ? thanks,Debra
I don’t know where, specifically, in the DMV you could donate yarn and needles. However, at the bottom of this blog post, you’ll find suggestions for people and places to which you can donate your yarn (and many of these work for needles, too).
Hi, I have a great deal of yarn that I would like to donate. Can you use it?
I have a large collection of needles, bobbins & knitting supplies do you know where I can donate them here locally?
Hi Marvis, I’ve just sent you an email about this. 🙂
I live in Maryland near DC and also have needles and yard to donate.
Lynne, I’ve just emailed you about this. 🙂
I’m looking to donate a lot of yarn… I live in the DC area. Any suggestions? Your prompt attention is greatly appreciated.
Hi Marcie! I believe I just emailed you about this. Let me know how you’d like to proceed. 🙂