Simple Thank You Appreciated by Charity Crafters

Blogged under Charity Crafting by Tammy on Tuesday 28 September 2010 at 6:43 am

One element of crafting that I tend to focus on here is crafting for charity. I even have a blog post category for it and often post information and links to charities needing people to make items for them. While I have finally settled on mainly making crocheted baby items for a local charity as well as crochet squares for Heartmade Blessings, from time to time I have made items for other charities I have found posting a need on-line.

I’m sure these other groups mean well, so I’m not going to mention any specific names; however, many of them are a “black hole,” meaning I have sent them handmade items to their specific instructions only to hear nothing back, not an email thank you, little post card, nada. I realize this could take time and money they don’t have, so for one of my latest charity donations like this I enclosed an SASE and a note asking them simply to let me know if they received the items.

I figure there is no easier way to do this. Someone who gets the items simply has to scribble out a note, stuff it in the SASA, and mail it off. This was a good few months ago, and so far, no SASE has been returned. This sort of burns my toast a little because I could have spent the time making items for a group that I would at least know got them. Heartmade Blessings, for example, has a Yahoo group set up, and most of the posting on there is a simple “I’m sending out squares to so-and-so” or “Hey, so-and-so, I got your squares, thanks!”

It is amazing how much a simple response like, “Thanks, I received them” is appreciated!

This SASE incident sort of sealed the deal for me because it had happened so many times before. One time, I packed up a ton of jewelry supplies and mailed them off to some woman’s shelter. The shipping was something crazy, and yet, I felt it was worth it since I had been personally asked to do this. Did I hear anything? Nope!

Though I still plan to post on this blog about charity crafting needs, I have personally become much more selective about who gets my crochet or jewelry goodies. For those who work with groups like this, take a note from Heartmade Blessings and remember to thank donors if you want to keep getting the items you need. Seriously, an email “thank you” can literally take a few minutes per donor and may be reason enough for them to continue sending you the crafted items your group needs.

12 Comments »

  1. Comment by Dee — September 28, 2010 @ 1:58 pm

    Thanks for this post. I am making my first item for a charity auction. It will be interesting to see how this goes!

  2. Comment by Tammy — September 29, 2010 @ 10:23 am

    Good luck, I do that with my local Humane Society each year, and I always get a nice little card back. I think some places just aren’t as organized as others.

  3. Comment by Eileen — October 3, 2010 @ 7:47 am

    Tammy, I have another one for you.

    I just learned about Right as Rain. They accept any type of craft item (to sell from their site) to raise money for a different individual in need (changes every 3 or 4 months).

    EVERY time they sell one of my pieces, I get an e-mail telling me and for how much. It’s so gratifying to know exactly how much I’ve been able to contribute and that it is appreciated.

  4. Comment by Tammy — October 3, 2010 @ 11:42 am

    @Eileen I’ll have to check them out. That sounds like a great idea, and it sounds like they are well-organized too!

  5. Comment by Karin — October 4, 2010 @ 10:08 pm

    Got a thank you card from a woman running a charity drive on Crochetville after I sent her 2 afghans…I will keep sending her stuff. Got nothing from another, and emails were ignored…nothing else going to her. I think some people have manners and some don’t.

  6. Comment by Barb — October 4, 2010 @ 11:29 pm

    I stopped sending yarn to a charity when I ordered yarn online for them and had it sent directly to them. I asked only that they send me a quick email to let me know they had received it. I never heard back from them, even after I sent another email asking if they had received it. As far as I know, I paid $40 for yarn that they never received. I haven’t sent them anything since. It only takes a few seconds to send an email saying thank your or we received your donation. Sad.

  7. Comment by sandy — October 5, 2010 @ 4:42 am

    Hi
    I donate to a lot of charities, but I’ve come to love a group call
    craftingforacause.com
    they acknowledge that they have received the items and you put what your sent in a database and they send you a receipt at the end of the year for tax purposes. They are dedicated to helping the Sioux Native Americans in Pink Ridge SD…
    I am also interested in finding out more about the right as rain charity…does any one know the website?
    thanks

  8. Comment by Ashley — October 5, 2010 @ 10:47 am

    I’d love to know about charities looking for homemade donations! I also love doing that and it’s so gratifying knowing you can help others.

  9. Comment by Annie — October 5, 2010 @ 1:49 pm

    Even worse when family/friends dont let you know they rec’d the handmade gift item in the mail. In my book – they get no more & I make for charities who do acknowledge receiving the items.

  10. Comment by Susan Kline — October 5, 2010 @ 3:56 pm

    I agree that a thank you only takes a moment and is really appreciated by the donor. This is true whether it’s a charity or a family member and to be honest, the group I work with making newborn hats, lapghans, children’s hats and scarves for Christmas and our latest project- toys and security blankets for children in homeless shelters always receives prompt thank yous. The Veteran’s Administration, the local hospital and nursing homes let us know that they’re very happy with the items. The shelter seems to be having difficulty setting up their space and with all they have to cope with, we can overlook not getting a thank you.

  11. Comment by Tammy — October 5, 2010 @ 5:58 pm

    @Karin I think you are right. My mom taught us to send thank you cards when we were kids. Today, I expect a thank you email, which takes 2 seconds.
    @Barb Knowing if they got is my main beef with this. I get that they don’t all have time to type up a great thank you note, but when you spend time and your own money and it goes off into a black hole, it feels like you just flushed it all down the toilet!
    @Sandy Thank you for letting us know about craftingforacause.com They sound very organized. Right as Rain has a facebook page here: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Right-as-Rain/102459809797354
    @Ashley If you go to my home page (www.tammypowley.com) and look on the right side, you’ll see a “charity crafting” category. I often blog about places you can send items to there. The Lion Brand site also has a long list of places, and you can geographically to find if any places are nearby.
    @Annie Too true, I have given some really nice stuff to some family members and not a peep back 🙁
    @Susan That is great that you have so many places to give to and know that your hard work is appreciate. In the past, I have tried to not let it bother me when I didn’t hear back, but after sending and SASE this last time, that was kind of “it” for me. Luckily, I have plenty of places to give my work to who I know receive it and use it.

    Boy, I really struck a nerve with this post…charities…take heed 🙂

  12. Pingback by The Crafty Princess Diaries » Right as Rain Charity — October 5, 2010 @ 6:08 pm

    […] on Simple Thank You Appreciated by Charity CraftersSusan Kline on Simple Thank You Appreciated by Charity CraftersZuleika Lambe on Start on Crochet […]

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