What began as a fun get together between a few families three years ago, has developed into a community of families who love to give back and teach their children about compassion. After searching for projects to do with their children, two Olathe moms decided to make no sew fleece blankets for Children's Mercy Hospital. Well, KindCraft is happy to say this is our FOURTH year of blankets and every year, we have not only been able to bless more people with our blankets, but we are making great gains in teaching our children how to love others and give back.
Here we are, four years ago, delivering blankets to Children's Mercy hospital, having no idea that this would all lead to a non-profit aimed at teaching children how to be compassionate towards others.
On December 12, the tradition of making blankets for others continued, as families gathered in multiple locations to make blankets. About 165 KindCrafters gathered at Olathe Northwest Highschool to learn about KindCraft, and to serve together. For most of the group, it was their first time making blankets! You could feel the excitement in the air as groups found their spot on the floor. "Families" included the traditional mother, father, and children, but there were several other "families" present as well, including this basketball team who worked as a team making several blankets. They even were caught carrying a huge stack of blankets, chanting "Teamwork, teamwork, teamwork". They have some pretty fun moms who got into the ninja look with their blanket scraps along with the boys.
There was also a Boy Scout "family" mainly made up of scouts and their dads. Whoever said that dads can't be crafty?! Besides a minor cut to the hand from fabric scissors, these dads did a wonderful job modeling patience, kindness, and compassion for their sons.
Girl Scout families were present as well. Here are a few pictures of them having fun together! Prior to the event, we even had a troop cut out hundreds of 4 x 4 cardboard squares that were used as templates to cut the corners of the blankets out. Thanks girls! Those really came in handy and now we have them to reuse in the future!
This family was attending their first KindCraft event, and this sweet little girl with her creative private patch told me that she was having SO much fun and she couldn't wait to come back for next month's project. We sure hope you do!! Don't you LOVE the pattern she chose? Loved hearing her tell us about how she chose the coordinating patterns.
KindCraft was also so appreciative of this generous group of teens from ONW who volunteered their time to help the event run smoothly. They helped with set-up, registration, and then they even worked together to make their own blankets to donate. Two of the girls approached KindCraft at the end of the event saying that they would love to be more involved in future projects! Yay-we think it's so good for the younger kids to see that kindness is cool-even the big kids do it!
This event at Olathe Northwest was made possible because one person stepped up. Her name is Jami, and when KindCraft asked if anyone would host an event, she volunteered. Thanks to Jami, more families were able to participate, and more children will be blessed with blankets. Jami, a teacher at Olathe Northwest Highschool, brought her own family to the event. Carly, her daughter, loved helping prepare for the event by carrying in supplies, and setting up tables. Jami's, son Creighton attended with his scout troop and enjoyed handing out tags and string to all the guests. Jami's husband, Jeff, also participated in making blankets! So appreciative of your entire family, Jami!
The event ended with counting and loading up the blankets for delivery. Over 120 blankets were made (ever tried counting with 8 eager to help kids, large trash bags, and giant blankets??-yes its tricky :) But we know we had at least 120! These helpers stayed late and worked very hard-cleaning floors, carrying supplies to cars, and bringing blankets to storage for the night. All with smiles on their faces!!
If there is one thing KindCrafters know how to do, it's to have fun. There's nothing more pleasing to hear then, "This is fun!" when kids are talking about doing something for someone in need.
The blankets were delivered by two volunteers to both Children's Mercy South and Children's Mercy downtown. They dropped them off at the Child Life department and with the help of some of Santa's elves, one of our KindCraft blankets was already delivered to this 8 year old, who just had heart surgery. The blanket was delivered right after a second surgery and it sure did put a smile on her face. We love seeing kindness come full circle! KindCrafters, you are truly making a difference!! Here she is all snuggled with her blanket after surgery!!
Stay tuned for more blanket event updates! There was another event at the Ball Conference Center where blankets were made for patients in hospice care. There were also several schools, service clubs, families, and scout groups who hosted their own KindCraft blanket parties and they will be delivering to various organizations in the next few days. Kindness truly is contagious!!
Would you like to give back to KindCraft so that we can continue to provide opportunities to serve? If so, please click here to make your tax-deductible donation now!