When you join the Guild, you have the opportunity to contribute to these and other projects that give us the joy of knitting, along with the blessing of helping others.
The Minnesota Knitters' Guild sponsors several ongoing projects that benefit seniors, homeless kids and families, and others who can use a warm scarf and a good thought. We donate yarn to seniors who then knit hats and scarves and mittens for the Children's Home Society. We have donated funds to the Duluth Salvation Army Auxiliary so they could purchase the yarn they need for their own charitable knitting. And we provide yarn and accessories to women at the Shakopee Women's Prison, who knit for their own children and for other children who are being placed in shelters.
Check back on our website for information on a new project. Better yet - join the Minnesota Knitters' Guild, and learn how you can help out with knitting for needy babies at the Hennepin County Medical Center's Midwife Clinic, for families on Pine Ridge and Rosebud Reservations in South Dakota, women at Shakopee Women's Prison, citizens of Afghanistan, and other projects that are sure to touch your own personal choices. Our blog has information and patterns about our past Service Projects.
Here are articles about our current and past projects:
The service committee solicited suggestions for the 2013 project and selected the broad theme of babies. Guild members are asked to knit for three charities that provide a wide range of services to infants and young children. This will be an opportunity for creativity, as these organizations are in need of a variety of knitted goods. As in previous years, door prizes will be awarded at the July meeting and at the conclusion of 2013. Members may put one ticket in the drawing for every item that is donated – more donations means more opportunities to win!
1. The National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome CLICK for Babies (www.clickforbabies.org) Each and every day infants across North America are shaken and abused because the person caring for them became frustrated with their crying. CLICK for Babies is a North America initiative to help educate caregivers about normal infant crying, how to cope with crying and the dangers of reacting to crying in frustration by shaking or harming an infant. The organization is collecting hand knit or crocheted purple hats which will be given to new parents in hospitals and doctors’ offices.
Patterns for newborn hats can be found on the CLICK for Babies website and in many publications. As a general rule, hats should have a circumference of 7.5 – 13.5 inches and a height of 3.5 – 6 inches. MKG members are asked to refrain from attaching pompoms or other decorations that could pose a hazard to curious babies.
2. Bundles of Love: Because every baby deserves the basics (www.bundlesoflove.org ) Every 3 hours, a baby in Minnesota goes home with a free bundle of 25 items produced by Bundles Of Love. Without this bundle, these babies would have nothing - no clothing, no bedding, no diaper bag because their parents are unable to provide these basic needs. Bundles of Love volunteers provide clothing, bedding and other necessities for infants, clothing for premature infants of all sizes, and burial garments and keepsakes for families who have suffered the loss of an infant.
This organization is in need of the following handknit or crocheted items:
socks, booties, hats
baby afghans, approximately 30" x 30"
jackets and pants
3. Preterm/premature babies(Location for donations being sought) A preterm birth is the birth of a baby of less than 37 weeks gestational age. The cause of preterm birth is in many situations elusive and unknown; many factors appear to be associated with the development of preterm birth, making the reduction of preterm birth a challenging proposition.
Premature infants who are born before organs are fully developed are at greater risk for short and long term complications, including disabilities and impediments in growth and mental development. Preterm birth is among the top causes of death in infants worldwide.
The following types of handmade items in extra-small sizes are needed: caps, booties, fingerless mittens, sweaters, and afghans.
Guild members who have suggestions of places to donate items for preterm infants or who would like to suggest other service committee projects for infants are asked to contact Michele Germanson, email@example.com, or Joyce Fitzgerald, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The purpose of the Service Committee is to distribute yarn and supplies to groups and organizations that knit for charity or promote and teach knitting. We now have an allotted budget but also receive funds and materials from donations. In addition, the guild as a whole participates in an annual service project with items donated to one or more organizations.
Donations we receive are sorted and the appropriate supplies are given to organizations that can make use of them. Donated yarn and needles have also been used for MKG teaching opportunities at Shepherds Harvest, the Minnesota State Fair and the Upper Midwest Alpaca Festival.
The organizations we continued to support in 2012 are MN Visiting Nurse Agency/The Minneapolis Women’s Needlework Club, Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly, Bundles of Love, Edina Senior Center, and Creekside Needleworkers (Bloomington). New organizations this year were Sarah’s Oasis, Salvation Army and the Weaving Program at Light House Transitional Home in Haiti.
In 2012 we donated a total of 513 skeins of yarn.
Bundles of Love: 43 skeins
Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly: 43 skeins
Light House Transitional Home: An estimated 50 skeins were mailed
Salvation Army: 35 scarves, 14 hats and 4 sets of fleece hat/scarf/gloves
Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly: 5 scarves, 1 shawl, 7 hats, 1 pair fingerless mittens, 1 pair mittens, 1 sweater and 1 toy
Bundles of Love: 5 hats and 6 pairs of socks
Guild members knitted items for two organizations this year. Members had great fun knitting a total of 183 toys which were donated to Hennepin County Medical Center where they are given to children needing surgery or who receive emergency medical treatment. The second MKG service project was to create clothing for youth which will be distributed by the organization Afghans for Afghans. Guild members donated a total of 135 mittens, socks, hats, sweaters and vests.
As in previous years, door prizes were awarded in the middle and end of the year to members who knit items for either service committee project. In addition, StevenBe donated a special prize basket which was given to MKG member Margie Kippley who made 87 items during the first half of the year and a comparable number in the second half. Thank you to all of the guild members who are helping to promote knitting and to help children in Minnesota and Afghanistan who are in need of comfort and warmth.
We have a year-long service project for 2009: The "Block of the Month" club (8-by-8-inch squares knitted out of machine-washable fibers, to be assembled into afghans at our January 2010 meeting). Finished afghans go to Bundles of Love, Children's Home Society and Family Services, and Range Center, Inc. Visit our blog for monthly patterns.
The Minnesota Knitters' Guild has been supported the Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency for many years. We regularly collect yarn and knitted clothing for public-health nurses to give to the families they care for.
Get the most out of your love of knitting! Membership benefits include pre-registration for Yarnover, a subscription to our quarterly Cable Gram, organized public service projects and camaraderie with fellow knitters. Annual dues are $30.