Quilting for Charity: Celebrating the Generosity of Quilters

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One of my favorite things about quilting is being part of an extended community of givers. Quilts are for giving, and quilters are the kind souls devoting themselves to share their lovingly made creations with others.

The constant dedication of charitable organizations quilters run and participate in is inspiring. Quilters make quilts year-round for veterans, children in need, families struggling with serious illness, victims of trauma, animals in shelters, and more.

Since now is the season for gifts and giving, it seems like a good time to take a minute to celebrate the givingness of quilters.

Nobody is counting the money, hours, yards of fabric, or quilts-made that quilters give so freely every year. But consider these few…

  • A single charity, Project Linus, gives more than 350 blankets and quilts a month to kids in hospitals, shelters, and social service agencies.
  • Every year since 2010 American Patchwork & Quilting inspires quilters to make and donate one million pillowcases to their local charities (including hospitals, shelters, veteran’s clinics and more) as part of the 1 Million Pillow Case Challenge.
  • Quilts of Valor has awarded over 151,000 quilts to veterans and service members touched by war, giving 312 just this week!

Quilters just keep on giving, and they give with a generosity surpassing the one-off corporate sponsored volunteer event, single donation to a charity of choice, or 5K run for a good cause.

In that spirit the Quilt Works Collaborative in San Francisco is a place that not only encourages charitable giving, but fosters a whole community of quilting generosity.

As founder, Linda Hannawalt, puts it Quilt Works Collaborative is “a one-of-a-kind creative space where underserved community members can learn how to sew; where struggling craftspeople can develop entrepreneurial skills and access quality retail space to sell their goods; and where volunteer quilters and neighborhood residents can sew and socialize together while producing quilts, pillowcases, and other handcrafted items for those in need in our community.”

What’s not to love about a place where supporting quilters and building a community generosity is as big a part of their mission as the charities they support? The collaborative is constantly growing and evolving and includes several major functions.

QuiltWorks at the heart of the collaborative is a quilting studio where people can come to learn how to quilt, use the equipment, and work together in the pursuit of creating quilts for people in need.

ThriftStitch is the QuiltWorks’ fabric store with a mission, where quilters can find thousands of yards of high quality discounted fabrics. All of the profits from the store go directly to funding the collaborative.

QuiltWorks Closet volunteers make “Welcome to the World” packages of essential blankets, burp cloths, and bibs for new babies born to low income mothers with little or no means or born into the San Francisco foster care system.

But the total scope of giving, doing, teaching, and loving that the folks of the Quilt Works Collaborative do is even greater because at its heart the organization isn’t just about doing just one great thing, it’s about building a community of people all doing great things together.

To celebrate the quilters of Quilt Works you can donate to Quilt Works today or learn about their many volunteering opportunities at their website: http://www.quiltworks.org/donate.

Happy Holidays quilters!

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