As many of my regular readers know I have been going to the Cleveland Clinic Main Campus in Cleveland, Ohio to see specialists for about 4 years. In that time I've come to deeply appreciate the quality of care in the hospitals surrounding Cleveland. I'm so grateful for hospitals like the University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center in Ohio, because I may need their services, and because my parents live near to Cleveland. I want to see them get the best of care. University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center System provides support on 4 main campus sites and in 12 community hospitals. The extent of their expertise is staggering. Of course with that many hospitals, volunteers are necessary. Through the virtual volunteer program anyone can be of help to the University Hospitals System. With so many great opportunities we should get started!
First, if you don't knit, crochet, or sew please know that there are so many ways you can help even from a long distance! Familiarize yourself with the volunteer opportunities here. (Check out the "Smiles with Style" wish list.) There is also a wish list maintained by University Hospitals here. Because of the type of services the various hospitals supply, and because they must maintain strict infection control guidelines PLEASE heed all the instructions given. It is vital. I take these guidelines very seriously.
The main webpage for UHCMC's virtual volunteers states twice on that they are happy to accept knit, crochet, and quilted items. Let me quote those two paragraphs. (That way there's no mistaking what the UHCMC is asking it's volunteers to provide)
"University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital and Hanna House Skilled Nursing Facility maintain wish lists of needed non-medical items. Items range from bubbles and small craft items to electronics. All sizes and shapes of quilted, knit, and crocheted items are needed for our patients in UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital (ages birth to 18 years of age), for infants in University Hospitals MacDonald Women's Hospital, and adults in Hanna House Skilled Nursing Area. We are happy to accept your handmade blankets, quilts, hats, booties, and other items from a smoke-free home."
"Quilted, knitted and crocheted items are needed for our patients at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital (birth to 18 years of age), for infants at University Hospitals MacDonald Women’s Hospital, and adults in Hanna House Skilled Nursing Facility. We are happy to accept your hand-made blankets, quilts, hats, booties and other items from a smoke-free home."
It is really vital that the items we donate come from a smoke free home (they mention it twice!) It might also be wise to clean the items in unscented detergent before sending them off. (allergies to heavy perfumes are prevalent)
As knitters, crocheters, and sewists, we can play an important role supporting patients and their families. I've been in the position of sitting around waiting for a test result to come back wondering what it would mean for my future. Just knowing someone is there to give you that comforting hug, whether it's in the form of a shawl or in the form of a supportive touch on the shoulder. We need each other. Knitting, crocheting, and sewing are just the visible form of the thread that binds all humans together in a difficult situation. If you are looking for a place to begin making your hugs, allow me to share patterns from some of my favorite designers.
Giving a patient their own blanket can be of great comfort or a lovely way to welcome a baby to the world. Here are some of my favorite blanket patterns.
Baby sets are everywhere. I love digging through Ravelry and Facebook to find the best.
I do want to encourage you to consider giving to University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center if you can this Summer. It really is amazing how much these people do for thousands of people both in and outside of the state of Ohio. Thank you for reading the blog and thank you to the artists who have taken the time to put their patterns out there for us for free.
**Opinions expressed on blogs about which I write are the opinion of the blog authors and DO NOT necessarily reflect my own opinion.