Sometimes, it’s the smallest things that convey the biggest messages. As Kiawah Cares works on the Sea Islands over the holidays, it always drives home how great some needs are, and how alone our neighbors can feel. This also became apparent to property owner Donna Porritt, a long-time Kiawah Cares supporter. After several brainstorming sessions, Kiawah Cares: Made With Love was born.
Imagine the comfort of a soft, warm blanket to a lonely senior or cold child. Now imagine the emotional impact of knowing someone cared enough to make it just for you.
Fleece lap blankets are easy to make, with no sewing, and can be done without concentration while you chat or watch television. The fabric is inexpensive, comes in many patterns, and is easy to work with. They can be made while you’re on Kiawah, while you’re traveling, or even with friends while you enjoy wine, cheese and laughter together.
View Made With Love craft instructions below:
The Made With Love team, shepherded by Donna, will add a personalized message tag to each blanket, and deliver them to Sea Island seniors, rehab patients, and school children. You can participate by making blankets (solo or in a group), donating fabric and/or ribbon, or contributing funds to purchase materials.
Made With Love isn’t just about fleece blankets though. Ideas include knitting, crocheting, sewing, quilting, jewelry making, scrapbooking, creating comfort packages, baking, and photography (in conjunction with scrapbooking and as family gifts). The team’s early vision is to create items for personal use, for children to give as gifts, and for teacher appreciation. It might include making meals for a family during a time of illness. Ideas are as endless as your creativity. In fact, the team is ready to launch a card-repurposing project, along with revamping the Operation Comfort program.
Card repurposing involves creating new cards from old ones. Greeting cards are often too lovely to just throw away. You can send new or used greeting cards and envelopes to Kiawah Cares, where they will be recycled into beautiful new cards, which can be used by children and seniors who cannot afford to buy cards. If you’d like to get involved in crafting cards, email firstname.lastname@example.org. If interest is great enough, Donna will put together a brief how-to session.
You may remember Operation Comfort, which is promoted each winter by Kiawah Cares. As a component of Made With Love, this will become a year-round project, using travel-sized items to create comfort packs. You can help by donating items or funds, sorting, packing and tagging. Did you know that socks are one of the most requested and least received needs? Here are some tips for great, unopened, travel size items:
- Disposable Razors
- Tooth brush/paste
- Feminine products
- Lip balm
- Hand lotion
Begin collecting the supplies as your schedule allows. Take home hotel toiletries when you travel. Pick up a few extra items when you go shopping, or find everything you need at a local dollar store. Get your colleagues, friends and neighbors involved by asking them to donate unused items they have on hand. The more people you involve, the easier and more cost effective the project will be.
Collection sites for all three of these projects are at Beachwalker Center (23 Beachwalker Drive).
If you want to get involved in any of these craft projects (current or future), have ideas for other handmade projects, or would like to be spearhead a project, email email@example.com.