These days, it isn’t difficult to find inspiration for charity knitting. Knitting and crocheting are rapidly becoming trendy hobbies, and so many beginning and experienced practitioners donate their projects to charity. Here are four different news articles about charity knitting and crocheting, and then some ideas as to how you can use these inspiring stories to benefit your own charity knitting! Four Inspiring Tales of Charity Knitting or Crocheting Inmates Crochet for Those in Need: We have presented on the Knitting for Charity website in the past stories of charities devoted to teaching inmates to knitting or crochet. This, however, is the first time I’ve seen such an initiative come from inmates themselves! Yes, an inmate at Folsom State Prison actually came up with the idea to start crocheting projects for charity, and many of his fellow prisoners have joined up. The local Lion’s Club is distributing their projects to homeless shelters. Why would an inmate come up with such an idea, and why would others join in? Not only did they want something productive to do while serving time, but they wanted something that would prove therapeutic to their own troubled lives. Crocheting served both purposes. http://www.news10.net/news/local/article/265671/2/Inmates-crochet-for-those-in-need Volunteer Knits Items for Pediatric Patients: Here is a story I come across time and again: a senior citizen who devotes his or her free time to creating items for charity. This story in particular relates the story of a volunteer working for the US Army Institute of Surgical Research Burn Center who donated dozens of handmade dolls and stuffed toys to a local pediatric clinic. My favorite part of this story is the end, when she is stopped in a parking lot with some of her dolls in tow and asked if they were for sale. Her response: an emphatic no. They are all for the children, and they are all for free. There’s nothing wrong with selling handmade items, of course; but in our culture, it sure can be rare to find someone so wholly devoted to donation! http://www.defense.gov/News/NewsArticle.aspx?utm_medium=referral&ID=121210&utm_source=t.co Knitting Group Funds Kitchen Pantry for Cancer Patients: Again, this isn’t an uncommon story: a group of knitters who use their knitting to raise money for a cause. But it’s a story that never fails to make me smile. This was an especially ambitious fundraising project: a fully-stocked kitchen pantry for a cancer center in Michigan, for families who need refreshment during a family member’s extended stay at the center. More inspiring still, the knitting group plans future fundraising projects to support other additions to this center. How marvelous! http://www.hometownlife.com/article/20131123/NEWS13/311230018/Knitting-group-funds-kitchen-pantry-cancer-patients?utm_medium=referral&utm_source=t.co Knitting with Love: Girl Scout Donating Warmth and Smiles: Perhaps my most treasured knitting for charity stories involve children. Isn’t it wonderful to know that today’s youth are picking up knitting and, better still, using it to make the lives of others better? This story revolves around a Girl Scout who started a knitting club in order to earn a Gold Reward; the group set a goal of knitting and donating 100 scarves and hats to a local soup kitchen. They wound up achieving that goal and then some, with over 200 handmade items donated. One of my favorite parts of this story is that she raised $200 before she even started this project so she could buy yarn and other supplies. Now this is one incredibly enterprising young lady! http://www.nashobapublishing.com/auto/news/ci_24547282/knitting-love-girl-scout-donating-warmth-and-smiles?utm_medium=referral&utm_source=t.co So what can we learn from these inspiring tales? A few different possibilities popped into my head. 1: Knitting and crocheting is a great way to help troubled people. Not only is knitting for troubled individuals a great idea, but teaching them to knit is, too. We all know how therapeutic knitting and crocheting can be, and sometimes donating your projects to charity is doubly rewarding. So if you’re looking for a way to help people, teaching knitting and/or crocheting classes is a great opportunity. Consider donating your services to organizations like Boys and Girls clubs. 2: Knitting makes an outstanding fundraiser. I mentioned above how trendy knitting is becoming; handknitted items are likewise enjoying a real renaissance. So if you’re thinking of a way to make a difference financially, consider selling hand-knitted items as a fundraiser. 3: Knitting unites everyone! Look at the disparate groups involved in these stories: inmates, senior citizens, adults, and children. All of these individuals share a common purpose in using knitting to make others’ lives better. I hope these inspiring tales of charity knitting have made you excited and eager for your next project!