Compassion in a Box

10 beautiful quilts donated by the East Bay Heritage Quilters, Albany, California

10 beautiful quilts donated by the East Bay Heritage Quilters, Albany, California

When Hurricane Sandy touched down it rocked the tristate area. Eight days later, when our electric returned the first call I received was from the American Quilter’s Society of Kentucky asking how we could team up. What resulted from that initial telephone call was an opportunity to receive over a thousand handmade quilts from AQS members who wished to provide warm, twin and queen sized quilts for the families impacted by the storm. What arrived: stunningly beautiful, professionally finished quilts of every color. Bright and cheerful gifts to comfort the soul; that demonstrated the compassion and empathy found in acts of kindness.

Our last official quilt donation to Hurricane Sandy families arrived from the East Bay Heritage Quilters of Albany, CA. The note inside their shipping box stated: “Many of us have connections to the East Coast-friends and family, and many of us have lived there. So, we were deeply hit when Sandy came through making her devastating changes. We hope our quilts will help as people continue to pick up and rebuild.”

Example 1

Example 2 Example 3

Nearly every quilt donation that arrived to our HQ, arrived with a note inside the box. Quilt guilds, quilting shop owners, quilting instructors, long arm quilters, faith groups, quilt clubs in schools and quilt enthusiasts all reached out to us.

All sharing the same message: keep safe, stay warm, we care.

Together, we make all the difference!

The Dreamweavers of New Providence, NJ

The Dreamweavers of New Providence, NJ

A few members of the  Tues night sit & stitch group, Middletown, NJ

A few members of the Tues night sit & stitch group, Middletown, NJ

To date, more than 170 knit, crochet, quilt and toy making groups have joined Blankie Depot’s network. You might wonder why an established group would need to join a non profit organization. The answer is two-fold: SOLIDARITY AND TEAMWORK. This is how 100% volunteer organizations make a difference; we are able to serve 30,000 NJ children a year by collaborating. Together, we make all the difference!

Crossroads AOG, Medford, NJ

Crossroads AOG, Medford, NJ

The Ladies of Embury Avenue

The Ladies of Embury Avenue

Service Learning

photo & infant toy donation courtesy of Harrah Newman

photo & infant toy donation courtesy of Harrah Newman

Service learning is a method of teaching that combines formal instruction with a related service in the community. As a teaching method, service learning is best categorized as a form of experiential education.  At Blankie Depot, we have led serving learning programs in public, private and charter schools, NJ Universities, with Scouts (boys & girls), at special needs daycamps, at YMCA’s and in library and museum settings.

All of the service learning programs we support aim to engage students in volunteerism, introduce the concept of public service and community outreach and offer the opportunity to create a handmade quilt, toy or afghan to comfort their fragile peers undergoing medical treatment or experiencing trauma.

To date, more than 45,000 NJ students are come through service programs connected to our organization.  Our service learning application process begins here:  http://blankiedepo.org/service/youth_registration.html

If you are interested in coordinating a service learning project with us, contact the Director, Hillary Roberts: director@blankiedepo.org

Crochet for a Cause Workshop

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Sunday, November 25th, 2012
Crochet for a Cause Workshop
NJ children shared the warmth during the holiday season by helping crochet a handmade blanket for a child impacted by Hurricane Sandy. The workshop was coordinated by The Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ and led by Instructor, Kimberly Charnuska.

Grounds for Sculpture blanket

photo courtesy of Kimberly Charnusaka