1 Million Pillowcase Challenge

The American Patchwork and Quilting Association has challenged people all over the world to sew 1 million pillowcases to donate to local charities.  The goal is not just about reaching a number; it is about making a difference.  Bright, colorful pillowcases can bring comfort to a homeless person, hope to a child suffering with an illness, encouragement for a battered woman, or beauty to a nursing home resident.  A unique pillowcase can make a person feel special in spite of the difficulties they face.

In Winnipeg, almost 500 pillowcases have been made and donated to charities since 2011.  They have been made by students and individuals of all ages.  My role started with a desire to get involved and make a difference.  After purchasing fabric and making several dozen pillowcases, I started to receive pillowcases from others.  Now I collect the pillowcases, package each one individually and find organizations that would like to receive them.  I collect them throughout the year and try to distribute them in late November/early December.  To date we have collected and distributed the following:

Pillowcases donated by High School Students

Pillowcases donated by High School Students

2014       –              100

2013       –              70

2012       –              225

 2011       –              80

Recipients include Osborne House, Shalom Mission, Villa Rosa, Alpha House, Hands of Hope, Salvation Army, and the West End Commons (housing for new immigrant families and individuals who are physically challenged).  Comments from recipients:

“We held a free toy and clothing event for newly immigrated families that was very well attended.  It was wonderful to have 75 bright, made-with-love pillowcases to hand out personally to our guests, thanking them for coming and making them feel special. What a perfect welcoming gift for new Canadians.”

“Thank you so much for your recent donation of 50 pillowcases to Villa Rosa… Almost 40% of Villa Rosa’s residents come from neighbourhoods that typically experience the highest crime rates in the City.Villa Rosa offers a safe and comfortable place to live, food, education, counseling and a respectful environment to help pregnant women develop or renew their sense of peace and confidence within themselves, a gift which they will bring with them when they foray back into our community with their baby. Thank you for assisting us in bringing peace and comfort into the lives of Villa Rosa’s moms and babies.”

“I just wanted to thank you again for the wonderful donation of pillowcases. They are great! It’s been fun picking out different patterns for each new tenant and their children. I just had three young boys who already moved into the building come to my office and pick some out for themselves and it was really sweet! They looked at every single one and each got one that they loved, as well as one for their mom. These kind of things can seem small but they are also so important in building relationships with people here, so thank you so much for thinking of us!”

For more information visit the American Patchwork and Quilting site at http://www.allpeoplequilt.com

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