“What does love look like?
It has the hands to help others.
It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy.
It has eyes to see misery and want.
It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men.
That is what love looks like.”
Well, the day has finally arrived - signup day for the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge 2012! I'm overwhelmed at the response we've already received - so many of you are excited to do this again, or for the first time - and it makes my heart sing! Thank you for all the support and encouragement you've given over the past few weeks as we geared up for this year's challenge.
If this is your first time to come across the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge, here's a little info about the charities we will be quilting for this year.....
|St. Bernard Parish after Hurricane Katrina|
First up is something I'm calling The NOLA Project. Quilts will be distributed to grade-school children in St. Bernard Parish in New Orleans. St. Bernard Parish was hit incredibly hard by Hurricane Katrina - storm surges took out virtually every building in the parish, and flood waters stood at 7 feet in most of the homes. The children that remain there have suffered through family changes as spouses split up over the decision to move or remain in the parish, and mothers tend to suffer from depression which affects the children deeply. Gladeville Baptist Church in Gladeville, TN has taken multiple work groups to this area since Hurricane Katrina, with the thought that returning to do mission work in the same area reinforces to these people that they are not forgotten, and puts an exclamation point on God's love for them. When the parish residents see the same faces over and over, relationships are built and God’s love is shown in many ways. The senior high school students at Gladeville have been going three times a year since Hurricane Katrina, and for the past few years have been working with the grade schools to provide physical education activities for the children while they are there during the school year, and summer camp activities during their summer trip. The children and the teachers look forward to their return each year! Quilts for this project can be any size from 50" square to twin size and will be sent to me here in the Nashville, TN area to be distributed in St. Bernard Parish this fall.
Our second charity this year is an ongoing project of Emily of Em's Scrapbag. You can choose to make quilts for Happy Chemo, an organization that provides quilts and comfort for chemo patients. They also collect up and provide information about freebies and discounts that may be of use to chemo patients. Emily has been championing this cause for a while, and last January set a goal of providing 1500 quilts to Happy Chemo. She’s at 382 right now, and I’d like to see her numbers grow! She has generously agreed to be part of this challenge, and is excited to see what comes of it. Here's what Emily has to say about Happy Chemo...
"The first time I met Ginger Johnston, founder of Happy Chemo, it was my first visit to a chemo lab. I was scared and unsure of what the future held for me. In walked Ginger, bald and boobless but determined to bring a little sunshine into the chemo lab. So before she started her treatment she took everyone’s name and drew prizes. It so changed my experience that I knew I needed to help her in her quest. I started making quilts for her to give. Because I can’t sew as fast as cancer strikes I started asking for help. I just want to bring a little comfort and joy to those who are facing the fear and uncertainty that trips to the chemo lab bring.
I accept quilts that are 45” square to 60”x 72”. Any style of quilt is accepted as cancer effects men and women, children and adults. Thank you for any help."
Quilts made for this project will be sent to Emily to help her meet her goal of 1500 quilts donated to Happy Chemo....
If you're torn between the two charities, feel free to make more than one quilt! Just think how many wonderful designs you can try.... ;-)
And here are the guidelines for this year's challenge:
1. Each participant agrees to make one or more quilts from their own fabric stash or purchased fabric measuring at least 45" x 45" and no larger than 72" in any one dimension. This will allow you to make rectangular quilts or square quilts, whichever you feel most comfortable with. The size of your quilt should be appropriate to the intended recipient (i.e. smaller quilts for young children, larger quilts for adults) and to the fabric you choose to use.
2. You can choose to have a partner assigned to you who will pick a color palette (just a palette, not fabric!) for you to work with if you wish. This is a fun way to interact with another participant in the challenge, and to stretch your wings a bit, maybe using colors that are outside of your comfort zone. If you want to participate in this part of the challenge, please let me know in your comment! I'll be assigning partners from those who wish to participate, and will send out contact information by Sunday, March 25th.
3. The quilts should be quilted rather than tied - this makes them sturdier and longer-lasting. And a new feature for international quilters (those outside of the US) - to save on shipping costs, you can choose to send your quilt flimsy (top) and backing to me and we will quilt it for you!
4. You have until Sunday, May 27th to complete your quilt. From Sunday, May 27th through Saturday, June 2nd, there will be a linky party hosted on this blog for you to link up to a post or Flickr picture showing your quilt. Please note: You do NOT have to have a blog or Flickr account to participate in this challenge - if you don't have a Flickr account, you can e-mail me the picture of your quilt(s) and I will post it for you.
5. Completed quilts are to be sent to either myself (for The NOLA Project quilts) or to Emily of Em's Scrap Bag (for the Happy Chemo quilts) no later than Friday, June 8th.
6. On Sunday, June 11th, we will draw winners for all the giveaway items donated by our wonderful sponsors from the people who linked up their quilts. You will get an extra entry if your quilt has been received already! You'll also get extra entries for each quilt you make, and there will be a special giveaway for the people who make more than one quilt.
And guess what?
We've got giveaways
for those who sign up this week!
First of all, Shannon of FabricsNQuilts is generously offering to send each person who signs up this week a digital copy of a great quilt pattern called "Charmed, I'm Sure" and a discount coupon for a future visit to her store! So if you don't have fabric to work with, or like me just can't resist a good deal, you'll be all set! And I've seen the pattern and it's perfect for a H2H quilt! Instant inspiration!
Then, from the people who sign up, we'll be drawing two names. The first will win....
... this beautiful jelly roll....
....and the second will win.....
... this great fat quarter bundle!
Both prizes were donated by Sue of Sue Daurio's Quilting Adventures. Thanks, Sue!!
And we've got one more prize especially for those people who put the Hands2Help button on their sidebar!
This great book, More 90 Minute Quilts, has been donated by Annie of Annie's Ruby Slipperz! Full of wonderful quilts you can make quickly, it's guaranteed to inspire you for Hands2Help and more!!
Now - here are some very important things to take note of. First of all, sign up for the challenge by leaving a comment below. Your comment should include your e-mail address (so I can reach everyone!) and whether or not you want to participate in the color palette swap. I will be contacting you by email, so if you don't hear from me within a three days of signing up, email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org because it means I don't have your email address!
Next, for extra entries in the signup giveaway, put the Hands2Help button on your blog sidebar, and/or write a blogpost about the Challenge. Encourage your friends to join in - it's fun!! Leave another comment for each of the extra entries you earn.
Signups are open from today until Saturday, March 24th. (People can still join in later to participate, but the winners of the signup giveaways will be drawn from the group that signs up this week.)
We've added some neat things this year - a linky party for you to share your favorite tutorial links next week; guest bloggers who will share a simple quilt design; and like last year, check-in dates for you to touch base and show off your progress! Each Sunday there will be something related to Hands2Help on this blog so be sure to check it out each week!
I hope you'll join in the fun - it feels good to quilt for others!! Let me know if you have any questions I haven't answered yet, spread the word and invite your friends, and sign up now!!!