Crystal's World

Welcome to my world! This is where you can see my crafty projects and probably learn a little about me and my projects!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Quilts for Kids

A little about what I do when I'm not looming! I work with a 501(c)3 charity - Quilts for Kids
Well... to begin, I've been making quilts for the organization since early 2004. Then, things evolved! I started running the sew-a-thon at our local quilt shop (The Quilting Circle in Bensalem PA) in August of 2004. Every month, I make more than 35 quilt kits and a group of volunteers known as 'The Sew Fine Quilters' gather to sew the kits into quilts. The volunteers range in age from 10 to 80 years old. They are a very creative, productive and friendly bunch! To date, our group has donated 1,288 quilts to Quilts for Kids. Considering that we have about 25 people sew with us every month (many other occasional volunteers too)--- It's amazing. Often the volunteers will also make quilts out of their own fabrics or will take fabric that has been donated and create their own designs. Shortly after taking over this sew-a-thon project, the Founding President of Quilts for Kids asked me to use some other talents to help out with the day-to-day operations of the organization. Officially, my title is Director of Membership and Volunteer Services. I work with the over 50 chapters we have internationally as well as individual voluteers nationally. In addition, I help to keep other things running smoothly for the organization.
Anyway, I decided to post a little about what is going on with Quilts for Kids as things are moving so quickly! Quilts for Kids was founded in 2000... and has donated over 40,000 quilts to children in need. The first goal was to keep fabric out of landfills and secondly to make quilts for children with life threatening diseases such as AIDS and Cancer as well as those who are battered and abused.
Downy (the fabric softener company) contacted us as they wanted to make Quilts for Kids the recipient of their 'Downy Family Quilt' Project. They have created a virtual quilt - they are asking for people to upload a photo of their families to fill the quilt... for each photo that is uploaded, they will donate $1 to Quilts for Kids. The goal is 20,000 photos. If we fill the quilt, Downy will throw in an additional $5,000! That's $25,000 to the organization! The great thing is that it costs nothing to participate... and you can even get a free sample of their latest fabric softener! To participate, please go to Downy's website. Please go to the site and upload a pic!

Secondly, The cast of the Broadway hit "Wicked" loves Quilts for Kids. On May 15th they will hold the 3rd Broadway show to benefit Quilts for Kids. This will be a Broadway star-studded variety type show. A star from the hit show Extreme Makeover will be participating - and we're hoping Tony Danza joins in... as well as many other big names in Hollywood and from Broadway. In the past.. Liza Manelli, David Hyde Pierce, Ben Vereen, Jai Rodriguez, Carson Kressley... and many other stars have Broadway participated... you can see more about the previous shows and information on how to get tickets on the Quilts for Kids website.

Thirdly, A major fabric company 'Crypton' has taken a fabric design that was created from some of our Quilts for Kids recipient's drawings and printed the fabric out. The Crypton Fabric is pretty resilient stuff... stain proof and anti-bacterial -liquid beads off of it! So, they have printed this fabric and are marketing it to hospitals and schools for their funiture lines. Some of the proceeds of each yard that is sold will be dontated to Quilts for Kids! In addition, Crypton has developed a few different bag types that will be sold with all proceeds going to Quilts for Kids. I'll have more infomation about this as it becomes available. There is a messenger bag (which can also be used as a diaper bag- pad included) as well as a tote bag- great size for knitters, quilters and loomers!

This is such an exciting time for Quilts for Kids... it has only be around for just over 6 years and has truly made an impact on the worlds of the little ones who most need it. Our next big step will be to get a 'real building'. Currently, The Q4K headquarters is run in a additional room built exclusively for Quilts for Kids... the addition was build by the founding president... and we have surely outgrown this room! Our goal is to have our own building which will be a storage place for fabric and finished quilts. Also we plan to have an open workspace for people to sew as a community for the community. We plan to offer sewing and quilting classes to teach others the art... as well as provide after school programs to help give kids a focus on community service. Ultimately, we'd love to also have a long arm sewing machine to help speed up the quilt making time and provide more quilts to kids in need!
So, there you have it... this is what I do when not looming!


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