Volunteering is a great way to help out your community, and because of the internet we can also reach out a bit easier to help people around the United States and also even in other countries! There are SO many organizations who would love some help/donations, and here are just a few wonderful organizations to donate hand made items to (or even money if you can). If you are not crafty, look up some organizations in your local area (library, pet shelters, homeless shelters, hospitals, senior centers...) there are bound to be many places that you can volunteer at.
Dress A Girl Around The World - They take pillowcase dresses made by volunteers and distribute them to girls all around the world. They even give you a tutorial on their website on how to make the dresses. It is very easy! My 6 year old daughter can do it (with a little help from me)
Project Linus -
"Project Linus is comprised of hundreds of local chapters and thousands of volunteers across the United States. Each volunteer and local chapter all work together to help us achieve our mission statement, which states:
First, it is our mission to provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need through the gifts of new, handmade blankets and afghans, lovingly created by volunteer “blanketeers.”
Second, it is our mission to provide a rewarding and fun service opportunity for interested individuals and groups in local communities, for the benefit of children.
Together we have distributed over three million blankets to children in need since our inception in 1995."
Craft Hope - You can get involved in all kinds of charitable donations here. Craft Hope raised a lot of money to help out Doctors Without Borders in Haiti. They have many different projects in the works.
Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep -From their website:
"The Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation (NILMDTS) administers a network of more than 7,000 volunteer photographers in the United States and 25 countries. At a family's request, a NILMDTS Affiliated Photographer will come to your hospital or hospice location and conduct a sensitive and private portrait session. The portraits are then professionally retouched and presented to the families on an archival DVD or CD that can be used to print portraits of their cherished baby.
Our entire network of affiliated photographers graciously donate their time and talents to our families and we are proud to be able to offer our services at no cost. Your Donations are greatly needed and greatly appreciated."
The Preemie Project - "The Preemie Project is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization that comforts premature and critically ill infants and their families at The University of Iowa Children’s Hospital by giving gifts of hats, booties and blankets that have been handcrafted by a devoted group of local and national volunteers. In addition, The Preemie Project offers solace to families who are grieving a loss by providing bereavement items such as handcrafted burial layettes and tokens of remembrance. The Preemie Project uses financial contributions to supply UI Children’s Hospital families in financial crisis with basic necessities such as diapers, toiletries and clothing."
This is just a very small sample of all of the wonderful organizations out there looking for help getting things to people in need. Please feel free to post your favorite charities in the comments!