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Donating Your Hobby to Help Others Shine

Updated on November 13, 2014

How Can I Make Even a Small Difference?

Procrastination and self-absorption . . . I will admit these are the two main reasons I hadn't acted on my desire to make a difference, even a small difference to someone, somewhere.

"Let others help themselves" was one small thought that seemed to help me feel better about the fact that I hadn't reached out beyond my own self needs. After all, I worked hard and didn't have much time left over to help someone else.

A change in not only my world, but also a loss in my world changed my attitude and my motivation.

If Feels Great to Share my Hobby

I don't watch much TV, I tend to enjoy audio books. I have a hard time sitting doing nothing, so I spend most quiet time working on my favorite hobby, which is crocheting.

Over the years, I couldn't begin to count the number of crochet projects I have worked on. Most all of my family have received either afghans or potholders, or scarves, etc . . . Though they would never say so, they have probably had their fill of dishcloths and the such. And yet, I am ever on the quest for a new crochet pattern to be able to sit and enjoy the colors and the feel of the soft yarn.

The last few years I have enjoyed sharing my hobby interest with a dear friend who also had a crochet hook in her hand when ever possible. Like me, Mary would crochet a quick row at lunchtime, in the evening and even when riding along on a road trip. I asked her one day how many grandchildren she had, as she was ever working on baby hats and baby blankets, and she told me that she donated the finished projects to a hospital for the premature infants there. This gave me a whole new feeling of respect and admiration toward her.

I lost my friend this year to a series of sudden, severe strokes, and her ever- present yarn tote sat untouched by her chair.

Now, each time I sat to work on my brightly striped afghan project, tears would accompany the rhythmic action of my hands. When Dave offered her colorful crochet tote bag and her remaining stash of yarn to me, I was so touched. At first my husband was worried I would sit bawling every time I used the items, but soon understood my happiness of having a small piece of Mary at my side.

I sat and stared at the pile of yarns that mainly comprised of sweet baby weight yarn in pastels and variegated bright colors and tried to picture what I would create out of them. The answer came pretty quickly. This yarn was meant for babies in need, and that was where they would be once worked into hats and booties and blankies. Mary's expert touch wouldn't be included in the items, but her love and desire to share her hobby with others would flow through them.

Now, my crochet hobby has taken on a whole new passion! I didn't realize how much I would thrill to finish one pattern and begin another that would go to an unwed mother, or a family lacking funds to keep their young ones warm, or to that premature baby waiting to go home.

I learned first hand being suddenly in a situation where funds are beyond tight, and how you could never imaging yourself in the situation you're in now. If I had needed a piece of warm clothing, I know Mary would've first in line to help me, and I feel blessed to be able to make even a small contribution to another in need.

Consider offering your hobby items to help others; whether to help supply needs, or to be part of a fundraiser, or even to teach your craft to a young person who needs the guidance, or just the willingness of someone to spend time with them.

I promise you won't regret it, and will certainly fall in love with the great feeling you'll be left with!

The Mary Donation Bag with just a few of her yarn contributions

Click thumbnail to view full-size
The Mary Donation Bag with just a few of her yarn contributions
The Mary Donation Bag with just a few of her yarn contributions
The Mary Donation Bag with just a few of her yarn contributions | Source

My Friend Mary

Just to give you a small taste of my friend Mary . . .

Although she was a good 20+ years older than me, Mary was such a kindred spirit!

Once when she was frustrated by an obnoxious lady in her shop, she looked at the customer leaving and said "Don't let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya". We would both laugh, and I knew this was the worse thing this sweet woman would say. She always had a comment that made me giggle. We would talk almost daily for a time and share crochet patterns, and sometimes naughty gossip.

Then, at the end of the day, she would take hold of her tall man's hand and head home . . . I dearly miss Mary.

(excerpts from my blog,

New Amazon - Somethings To Help You Create!

Crochet from the Heart
Crochet from the Heart

Great book for donation ideas.


How to Find A Charity To Contribute To

Finding a charity to contribute you items, or time to, is actually the easy part.

There is so much need all around us . . .

The internet is how I found a local organization that accepts items for several charities in need.

Your local mission is always in need of warm blankets and hats.

You can contact hospitals and senior homes and foster child organizations.

There are many churches sponsoring mission donations.

Our military love receiving warm blankets and hats.

A few great sites to get you started are:

Martingale Crochet Pink Book
Martingale Crochet Pink Book

Love this crochet book!


Hobby Items to Donate

Whatever you hobby you enjoy most likely is a candidate for donations.

As you may have guessed, I donate crocheted items, with the occasional knitted project thrown in.

You may enjoy making wooden toys, and what better item for a child who's family has lost everything in a fire and has no means of providing Christmas gifts.

You may love to cook, and I can guarantee that there are folks in need of a warm meal.

Are you one who loves to sit down and have a great chat? You would be amazed at the elderly who would love to share their wealth of experiences with someone willing to donate some time to shorten all the lonely hours.

The possibilities are endless . . . whatever you love to do, someone else can benefit from it in some way.

Funny Girl Designs Riley Crochet Baby Hat (6-24 Months)
Funny Girl Designs Riley Crochet Baby Hat (6-24 Months)

Beautiful baby items to crochet for donation!


Always a Work in Progress


I would love to hear how you choose to contribute!

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    • RussnJo profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      You are so kind LluviaDeArte! Mary was a special lady and I'm so lucky to have known her and share time together. We all need some inspiration in our lives.

    • LluviaDeArte profile image


      5 years ago

      This lens is so amazing, thank you so very very much for writing it, it has inspired our whole company to do our own cozy work! Incredibly powerful how love moves mountains. Thank you !

    • RussnJo profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      I appreciate your comment holistic writer! With the cold weather here now, I just want to wrap up all those little ones, and hug the older ones.

    • TerriCarr profile image


      5 years ago

      Admirable work! Those babies can surely feel your love in the hats and blankets you create.

    • RussnJo profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      Thank you kiwinana71 for the compliment!

      I wish I had learned more knitting skills, some articles seem to lend best to knitting vs. crocheting. And I'm sure those babies will be nice and warm.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 

      5 years ago from New Zealand

      I like this craft lens, great job.

      I am knitting baby hats for prem babies in NZ, for premature babies, hope it keeps them warm.


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