You can knit for this new charity and partner with organizations all over the world to help orphans and widows
In November 2017, American Megan Zirkle discovered that in southern Pakistan, they desperately needed warm clothing for children in their rural villages. Feeling a need to help, she rallied her friends and family to gather and send 40 handmade beanies for these children.
Today her initiative has grown into a 501(3)c non-profit called Stitch Mission. Their mission: “to show the love of God by fulfilling the Biblical commands to serve widows and orphans.”
They strive to do this by providing handmade blankets and clothing to orphanages. They also support projects that empower and sustain communities. Stitch Mission partners with orphanages, ministries, schools, and missionaries around the world.
The Start of Stitch Mission: the Rest of the Story
I wondered how an American living in Missouri found out about the need for warm clothing in Pakistan. The short answer is Facebook (she has friends all over the world via this social network). Megan shared the longer story with me:
My friend Noman lives in Pakistan and teaches weekly Bible classes to children in the rural villages. He would occasionally send me pictures of the children, and I noticed that many of them were wearing beanies.
At the time, I had been making beanies for my own children so I thought, why not make some for these children too? They really captured my heart, and through prayer I felt as though God was calling me to show love to children around the world because there were so many that needed it.
Once the shipment arrived, I was very happy but also sad because I realized that while 40 children received beanies, there were many that didn’t.
That realization led Megan to act further.
My eyes were being opened to the incredible needs of these children around the world as I researched the current global situation of the over 153 million orphans worldwide. Networking with more people online who ran orphanages, went on mission trips, and ran charities also helped me to understand the overwhelming problems that exist.
I also began to study what the Bible had to say about serving the poor and needy, and I learned that through the works of my hands I can show love to many people and help provide encouragement, hope, love, and understanding that they do have a purpose because God loves them!
What Stitch Mission Does for Orphans & Widows
Currently, Stitch Mission supports four projects.
- Pakistan Beanie Project, where it all started! Stitch Misson partners with the Rejoice Care Center, where they distribute beanies with Bible verses sewn in them.
- Remnant Campaign, which runs all over the world. This campaign partners with many organizations and individuals worldwide — orphanages, donors, churches, and missionaries. The sole purpose of this campaign is to deliver blankets to orphans.
- Sewing Training Center, a partnership with Love One Another Ministries. Here they are teaching 100 widows to sew, so that they can support themselves and their families.
- Chicken Coop Project, a partnership with an orphanage called Life for God Community in Uganda. This delightful project built a chicken coop on the orphanage property and provided the necessary supplies for raising the chickens. As a result, the orphans now get to enjoy fresh eggs. For children who normally have very scant meals, this is a tremendous benefit.
Stitch Mission is currently working on another project. They have recently begun working with local homeless and women’s shelters to teach crochet classes. Megan is hoping to do this in the United States as well.
Megan’s vision is tremendously inspiring! She shared with me some of her hopes for future Stitch Mission projects and programs.
I have become connected with many farmers, orphanage directors, missionaries, and pastors in Uganda. My vision is to someday help the orphanages become more self-sufficient by building chicken coops, gardens, and even on-site schools.
Many children there cannot afford the nearly $100 per year tuition fees. So it is very sad, and I am always hoping to be able to do more as Stitch Mission grows.
We are sending our first delivery of Stitch Mission blankets to Uganda with a missionary on August 6th, so it’s a very exciting time! In September we are planning to send shipments of beanies to Pakistan and India as well.
I’m always looking for missionaries who want to deliver handmade items, but at the moment we are collecting donations to build up our inventory so that we can be ready and prepared with the opportunity arises.
How You Can Help
As knitters, the easiest way you can help is through (of course!) knitting. Stitch Mission currently accepts 3 different knitting projects: toddler’s and children’s beanies, children’s blankets, and squares, both 6” and 12”. For more information about these projects, take a look at their “Handmade” page.
If you have friends and family who enjoy supporting charity financially, spread the word! They may be very interested in supporting the Sewing Training Center and/or the Chicken Coop Project. Click the links to get more information about these projects.
Finally, be sure to check out the Stitch Mission Shop! You’ll love all the wonderful knitting- and crochet-friendly products, and 100% of the proceeds goes directly to Stitch Mission’s programs.
If you’re interested in getting news about new projects and programs, you’ll also want to sign up for the Stitch Mission Newsletter, which you can do at the bottom of their home page. You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram.
I’m amazed at how much Megan Zirkle has been able to accomplish with Stitch Mission in such a short period of time. If you’d like to reach out to orphans all over the world, why not consider knitting for Stitch Mission?