Creative crafting and caring go hand in hand
All over the world, creative and compassionate crafters—knitters, crocheters, and stitchers—are looking for ways in which they can make their craft really matter.
The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) estimates that there are 25 million children orphaned or made vulnerable by a combination of losing parents to HIV AIDS, poverty, stigma and government inaction. About 85 percent of these children live in southern Africa.
In addition, every year, hundreds of thousands of children are exposed to natural disaster, war, and pandemic disease.
Global agencies do a remarkable job, often with stretched resources, to house and feed these children, sometimes in very difficult circumstances.
The crafters of the world can do a different job. They can provide warmth, comfort and support.
We can also all look to creative endeavour to figure out innovative ways in which we can help educate, stimulate and inspire hope in the children and their carers.
CreateCare Global works to facilitate these solutions at the intersection of creative endeavour, hope and awareness.
We started this work with our primary project Knit-a-square.com (KAS), co-founded with Knit-a-square South Africa.
The idea was simple. Ask the world’s knitters to knit and send squares to our South African office where our volunteer community they could sort and sew them into blankets, for distribution to orphaned children.
KAS has had remarkable success in the eight years since it’s inception. It very quickly garnered a dedicated and passionate community of over 15,000 crafters, in 60 countries. To date they have sent over a million squares, hats and jumpers to KAS South Africa.
Inspired by this work, Dianne Jones who lives in Turkey has created a knit-a-square style project, Love in the Language of Yarn (LILY). They have supplied over 16,000 hand made blankets to Syrian refugee children.
We have been made aware of dozens of similar responses all over the world, including Brazil.
To participate in the Knit-a-square program, visit http://www.knit-a-square.com for details.
The success of CreateCare Global’s primary program, knit-a-square, made us understand that while the crisis seemed insurmountable, there is an army of people around the world desperate to help.
We developed CreateCare KidsTM as a global community concept for school aged children, so they had the means to take action on behalf of these children through creative endeavour.
‘I well believe that this will be looked back on as the sin of our generation and our children, 40-50 years from now will ask, what did you do while 40 million people became orphaned in Africa.’ Richard E Stearns USA World President, World Vision.
Schools are encouraged to become CreateCare KidsTM schools, by demonstrating a commitment to develop their students as global citizens, through action and raising awareness of the issues – disease, poverty, stigma, war and travesty – that create the circumstances in which children are made orphaned or vulnerable.
CreateCare KidsTM has a framework that can be applied at all ages. The current program overview is about sharing, giving, learning and doing, through it’s All in the Bag, Let’s Walk and Knit-a-square initiatives.
‘Our entire fifth grade has learned how to knit with the help of some fabulous parent volunteers…Our goal is to be able to send well over 300 squares by May from our fifth grade students. I wanted you to know how much the children in our classes have been affected by hearing about the children you help. Thank you for making a difference and helping our kids to see that there are children just like them who need assistance. I think that what they feel and learn from doing this will be so fulfilling.”
Kristen Gryskevich, Teacher, Brownsburg, Indiana
For a small donation of $12.95, you can download the Knit-A-Square Teacher Guide . The Student guide is available for you to download here.
Please note: The CreateCare KidsTM Program is currently being updated and improved. We will contact you to replace your kit, once the new program is launched in 2018.