Give a Little Love in a Day!

Sometimes we get invited by the hospitals and hospices that we donate our handmade items to spend time with the patients and caregivers. Recently, one of our volunteers Jacquie Mwaura spent a day donating blankets and engaging with the patients at Nairobi Hospice. Jacquie has been one of the longest serving members of Crochet Kenya who gives her time in these visits. She is a very sociable person with a warm personality that brightens up the room she walks into. She has this to share about her experience.

Jacquie donating blankets made by Friends and Volunteers of Crochet Kenya at the Nairobi Hospice

Last Thursday, I was joined by my friend Marie at Nairobi Hospice for one of their weekly support groups. Attending the support group for women reminded me of the resilience of the human spirit. That no matter how much life can throw at you, you have the power to pick yourself up and keep going. The ladies were supportive of each other and very welcoming to us. They were delighted to receive the crocheted blankets and their personalities really shone through as they made their preferences based on colours and textures.

No matter how much life can throw at you, you have the power to pick yourself up and keep going.

The catering staff were friendly and welcomed us to participate in serving the women their lunch. This made for great conversation and banter. The other staff members at the hospice were warm and friendly and Winnie went above and beyond to make sure that the donation process went well. So far we were able to donate 16 blankets. The rest would be kept for clients who came for future meetings. Others would be given during the home visits for patients unable to attend the meetings physically.

All smiles as they received the blankets from Crochet Kenya.

Donation drives are unique from each other and this one was no different. I would sum this donation up in an equation. One end has the women who donated their time and skills to make the blankets, the other has are the women from Nairobi Hospice who graciously accepted them and in the middle is gratitude and support for one another. All in all, it was a great experience and support of any kind in any small way can have an impact on someone’s life.

Getting Featured on Lovecraft’s Website

September 2020, saw Crochet Kenya philanthropic activities get noticed by a leading crafting website – Lovecraft. We got to share some of our activities and our vision. Have a peak at what was written here by Morine Odiemo of Morine’s Shop here. Morine is one of Crochet Kenya’s volunteer and she has been with our group since 2016 and she has donated such beautiful toys and hats for our cause. Thank you Morine!

Access the article by Lovecraft here.

Stop by Morine’s Shop and support her business. [Morine’s Shop]. I think she is one of the most forward thinking local crochet crafters in Kenya and creator. Her blog / website is very interactive and well thought out. Guess what, she has a 15% discount when you make your first order through her website. Hurry along and take advantage of her patterns offers.

Liz, Founder Crochet Kenya

2013. File picture of a donation at Faraja Cancer Care Center in Nairobi to Cancer survivors.

Our Impact in 2020

Looking back into what we have accomplished last year (2020), I am astounded by the spirit of giving and the level of creativity that many of us have shown. Even though the world was put at a standstill by COVID 19 and its restrictions on social life, we somehow managed to make donations.

Yes, we followed #COVID19 rules of social distancing, wearing face masks during our interactions and also ensured we washed all our handmade items before we donated them to the various hospitals, and institutions.

The donation items we made included lap blankets, scarves and hats for the Elderly at Nyumba ya Wazee, and for patients of Nairobi and Kisumu Hospice. We also made a number of Baby blankets, hats and preemie wear for the Jaramogi Odinga Referral Hospital Baby / Premature Unit, have been such a blessing to many people young and old within Kenya. For the hospital in Embu (Ugweri Dispensary) we made a few baby clothes including sweaters, blankets, dresses, onesies and several hats.

We believe all these items we donated have been keeping everyone who received our donations warm and loved. My prayer is that in 2021, we will give more selflessly and full of love.

Partnering with Like-Minded Crafters

We got approached by a group led by Haseeta known as the Amazing Knitting and Crocheting Group on Facebook to partner with them and make blankets for the donations. We managed to get over 50 blankets from this team whcih we distributed to the various homes and hospices.

Why We Partner?

We can’t lock out anyone who wishes to give. We have a heart to do things together and with one accord. So, reach out to us anytime via our social media pages to see how we can partner via:

Instagram

Facebook

Email: crochetkenyacbo@gmail.com

We can partner with you at any time all we need is your commitment and a project deadline and we will agree on where we will do the donation in liaison with the institution we are donating to.

I thank those who donated time, yarn, energy, crochet items and also those who simply said a prayer or word of encouragement. I pray that the good Lord will bless you once more. I pray that your passion never dies and that you see the purpose of this giving in a new light in this new year!

Liz Muema

Founder, Crochet Kenya

The #CKAugustDonation Drive

Early in June 2020, we kicked off the Crochet Kenya August donation project dubbed #CKAugustDonation drive. We opened up our August donation commitment to all crafters in Kenya who would be interested to join our initiative. We committed to make blankets, toys, preemie wear, hats and scarves which we planned to donate in the month of August to several hospices, homes and hospitals.

We collected more than 82 blankets, 148 hats, 32 scarves, 57 preemie outfits for the donations. Our first donation in August was at Nairobi Hospice on 6th August. Our founder, Elizabeth Muema had the privilege of visiting meeting Mrs. Ruth Were, the Chief Executive, and Winnie their PR officer. We donated 22 blankets, 15 scarves and 30 hats.

The next donation was on 9th August at the Nyumba ya Wazee this weekend, Kisumu Hospice next week and Faraja Cancer Care center towards the end of the month. If you have any blankets or scarves you wish to donate through us kindly contact me Liz Museo +254721715636 via WhatsApp!.
#crochetkenya
#crochetblankets
#crochetscarves

Donations….where are we at?

Recently, Crochet Kenya group members were tallying the number of items we have donated since we started this Community Based Organisation in 2014. We never expected to do so much but with the grace of God, we are here and having blessed man hearts.

These volunteers do marvelous things that wow me and many others around them. Now, there are over 40 volunteers crocheting and some knitting for donation through Crochet Kenya. These women have come up with crazy challenges that would help us hit our targets e.g. 40 hats in 40 days memorizing 40 scriptures. That was the mother of all challenges. Now, we are doing one blanket by joining squares due for donation in June/July at a Nyumba ya Wazee (elderly home) near Nairobi. I think the motivation comes with the satisfaction of donating beautifully crafted items to the sick in hospitals.

It hasn’t been easy, but we all reckon, it has been worth it. So, here are the numbers.

Hats donation;

A total of 1,423 hats donated. the 2016 donations were as follows:

From 2014 to Dec 2015 we had donated 1,206 hats. Then in 2016, donations increased when we decided to go into the counties. Kisumu hospice – 48 hats; Nakuru hospice – 45 hats; Moi Referral Hospital Eldoret – 55 hats; Kitui General hospital – 40 hats.

Then, the group decided to also bless a church in South ‘C’ of homeless people with¬†another 39 hats, bringing the total donations of hats thus far to 1,423!

Like that was enough, we were approached by a beautiful team of two ladies that were planning a Project Baby Shower event targeting first-time mothers who have all the questions regarding childbirth and life after childbirth. To this event, and because we love children, we donated another 22 baby hats to the mothers-to-be. So, total donations now stand at 1,445.

Hairpins….Really?

You know we like to make women feel pretty. Crochet Kenya had pledged to give during the Endometriosis Foundation during their awareness month (March) 50 yellow hairpins. Another 150 hairpins were donated to participants of Stories of Courage event held in 2015 and 2016 bringing the total donation of hairpins by Crochet Kenya to 200 hairpins for good causes.

What next?

Now, we plan to donate to a foundation that supports kids with Cerebral Palsy in Nairobi. We also plan on doing about 50 hats for the kids. And in addition, we currently making blankets for the elderly at the Nyumba ya Wazee. More details on the donation initiative will be shared onto our Facebook wall and Instagram page.

New Shop!

And, we opened a new shop in Juanco area, near Ngong town at Lube Sill Centre, Shop B4. We are totally excited by this great move and now are planning to expand the business more as a strategy of making finances that we need for the donation initiative. Please visit our shop at Lube Sill Centre; or by visiting our Facebook page and making orders or our Instagram page.

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GROWING IN TALENT (part 2)

Anyone who is able to craft something from just scraps of material or from what is perceived as nothingness is talented. It may be easy to criticize the work they make, but if you were asked to replicate or make something similar, can you?

At Crochet Kenya, we have volunteers who set time and effort in creating beautiful hats and other handmade items to give away to the sick in hospitals. So far, thanks to these ladies, we have managed to donate 1,222 items; which include hats, baby shawls, baby booties, baby sweaters, baby dresses, and scarves. Our last donation was for the men’s cancer survivors support group hosted by Faraja Cancer Care Centre in July 2016. We donated over 60 scarves to the men of the group and provided emotional support and prayers.

As a way of raising funds needed for our donation drives (we require, printed logos, packaging papers, yarn and crochet accessories), we usually sell crochet items that are custom-made. And that has also created a source of income for the women in the Crochet Kenya Community Based organisation. They give a percentage of commission to the group and retain a percentage as well to boost them for the hard work put in creating these handcrafted items. We also offer training classes every other month. The next training is slated for September 17th and September 24th, 2016. Cost is Kes 2,500 per day. Here are some images from previous training sessions. More details found here: Crochet Kenya FB.

Therefore, as a continuation of yesterday’s series that showcases the diversity in talent by these women, we have highlighted more beauties in this article.

Ressie is a volunteer of Crochet Kenya. She has her own crochet page on facebook called RESSIE CROCHET CENTRE. She has cut out her niche in baby items and scarves as well. Check out her lovely work.

Rhoda (we call her Mwiitu, which means young girl in Kikamba), is a very talented lady. She is all artistic and very photogenic. She does event planning as her main career path but once in a while indulges in crocheting. It can be addictive as we all have come to realise. Rhoda makes beautiful scarves. She does finger knitting and also makes pretty baby items. Check out her dungarees.

Violet is a lady I have given respect for her determination in being where she is in crocheting. She is a self-taught talented woman with intelligence and a strength that not many people can possess when it comes to her life story. She has endured pain, loss, and many other disheartening things but her joy, healing, and comfort come from crafting. She does crocheting, knitting, carpet making, handbag making, blankets etc. Shoes….yes, she makes crocheted shoes! ¬†I will soon be featuring her life story and how crocheting and knitting saved her life on this blog post. She has her own creative page on facebook: PAULINYLINES.

Sharon, a young lady from Eldoret, is actually a nutritionist who picked up her hooks to keep herself busy before employment. but she is hooked. I have always admired her neat work. When she picks up a 4mm hook, the work comes out like a 3mm hook was used. She  taught herself how to read patterns from youtube and she can tackle difficult patterns. She also makes carpets Рher new found pass-time love. Check out her Facebook page too, CROCH-ART.

Amanda is one of the youngest members of the Crochet Kenya crew and she is just full of life and very enthusiastic about the whole donation thing. We recently had a 40-hats-in-20 days challenge and she actually did more than 40 hats within the 20 days.God bless her heart! This cute little number, she tried it at least 2 times before getting it right. It was worth it.

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Anne Muuo is one of our most recently joined members. She hails from Machakos passiii. (Wakwitu). Anne is very courageous in trying out new designs and new ideas. I like her work. Look at these lovely grand designs.

Lorraine, also a new Crochet Kenya family member, is pretty much talented. She makes beautiful things and takes her time to make them beautiful for her clients. Check out the gorgeous book cover she made. She is also a blogger and an arvid reader. Follow her blog on http://www.amagove.wordpress.com and her Instagram Page@obsidiancrafts_ke

Watch out for Part 3 where we shall be listing more creativity from these talented lot of givers!

Read Part 1 of the Growing in Talent Series, here, in case you missed it.

Lizy Museo, Founder, Crochet Kenya.

GROWING IN TALENT (part 1)

Crochet Kenya members have been busy learning new designs and skills as a way of improving their workmanship. We meet as often as every three to four months, however, our Whatsapp group is the secret towards our beautiful handiwork. The most interesting thing from this is that we slowly carve out our niche or comfort items of crochet. Some of us have realised their love of making baby clothes, others blankets, others crochet lace items, bathroom sets, and also some adult ladies clothing. This amazing team is highly dedicated and very generous in giving their time for the cause of making handcrafted stuff for donating to patients in various hospitals. Thank you, ladies!

Jacquie found that she can actually copy an image and create a similar bathroom set without referring to a pattern. She also found a way of making clothing that looks like it’s from variegated yarn buy mixing cool blends of local single colour yarn. Check out her beautiful work.

Joyce, on the other hand, can basically make anything she puts her heart to. She has been making gorgeous baby items and also has her own page too on WOW CREATIVITY .

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Jacquie-Lizzy (below picture, the one on the left) just loves making scarves and trying out crazy colours on her baby items. This lady has a very neat hand, her items come out very smart almost machine made.

Njambi is a knitter and a crocheter. Having the double portion or gift is admirable. She made this for herself. Njambi loves following crochet-alongs and mystery crochet- along blanket squares. Check her shawl,all knitted; isn’t it lovely?

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Pam is another brilliant mind who just looks at a picture and replicates the item. She can do a shawl in a day or two knitted or crochet. Yap – that is how fast she is. She also has the wit to blend crochet and fabric. Pam, is a master crochet kiondo maker as well, using upcycled yarn! I must say, her work does stand out.

Hilda is one of the early members of Crochet Kenya and a good planner. We like her energy and thoughtful ideas on crochet challenges for the group. Hilda, loves colour – a lot. But she is also a very patient blanket crocheter. Look at her beauties.

Rosamarie, is a Crochet Kenya member who lives in Kisumu. She has over 40 years experience in crocheting. She can make beautiful doilies and she likes her small hooks and cotton yarn. She is good with lace crochet designs and reading charts.

Desma has been crafting since her teens. She does knitted hats in less than 4 hours and she uses the smallest hooks ever when crocheting. Surprisingly, she doesn’t read patterns, just another amazing talented lady who looks and replicates.¬†Desma can make anything, name it, from table runners to baby clothes, and adult sweaters etc. See her images below.

Tomorrow, we continue sharing our talented team’s best work. We will definitely appreciate your comments and feedback so that we can continue making quality items for you.

Contact us on crochetkenyacbo@gmail.com / Instagram @crochetkenya / Facebook @crochetkenyacbo

 

We have donated over 722 hats this far

Since we begun our charity work, we have grown in leaps and bounds. From an initial 10 volunteers in 2014, we now have 35 committed ladies who have totally dedicated their talents and their valuable time to this ministry.

We thank God for all these talented women. I also thank God for the opportunity to meet most of them in person and give them my special thanks.

In September 2015, we held our final donation for the year. We distributed over 322 hats to children at the Kenyatta National hospital children’s ward.

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Our new target is to make 1000hats and we are doing a 40hats and 40prayers in 40 days challenge… we are at 400 hats this far!

Thereafter, we had our 4th crochet-a-thon meeting of the year where we discussed ways in which to grow this group. New things are coming along the way.

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Tatuu made her first ever cute dress…

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We also participated in several events trying to sell our merchandise…Kijiji Festivals, Sitara event thanks to Njeri & Marcus Olang. Our territory is expanding with every exposure.

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We also donated to new mothers who attended a special eventvplanned by one of our very own Crochet Kenya Members, Waithera Kibinda in November. Below are some of the hats we gave out.

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We are excited for what awaits us in 2016. 

The Value of Committed Volunteers

As I reflect on how far Crochet Kenya has grown, I see so much potential and talent and endearing commitmment. I see purpose and love and my heart understands the value of it all.

Late July, we committed to making 300 hats for donation to Kenyatta National Hospital Children’s Ward. The donation is set for 18th September. I have seen members of Crochet Kenya go out of their way to beat this deadline.

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We are at 110 hats. All made by dedicated volunteers of Crochet Kenya. My heartfelt gratitude goes to Hilda, Mule, Loise, Rosamarie, Marion, Sharon, Bella, Anita, Violet, Maggie, Mwiitu and her sister Rose, Ursula and all who are crocheting to meet our 300 hats target.

Most of these women have set time apart to make cute little hats for the sick babies we will be going to see soon at the national hospital. They often work in the evenings after work or their day job activities. The dedication and love is inexplicable.

Meanwhile, we have also found wonderful talent by the same ladies….they are aking items they never imagined they would and are quickly becoming experts too.

Sharon made her first dress for an 8 year old.

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It looks exactly like the pattern: Flounce dress by Crochet Patterns Galore- http://www.crochetpatternsgalore.com/flounce-dress-2870.html

Then Gladys shared some beautiful garments she made for her friend.

Hilda simply loves to make baby blankets and has wowed us all…..we love her determination.

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Catherine Mutuku is our new scarf guru.
Rosamarie just cant stop making cute things n linking us up to new. Rochet information. Anita and Desma and Rosa, though far from us. They do srnd in gorgeous hats for donation.
These ladies here are awesome and I thank God for each of them. (And all others who are not in picture).

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Liz Muema,
Founder, Crochet Kenya