I was recently privileged to become friends with Lindsey from Sew To Grow. She told me about Project Made, in which she is highlighting 28 days of people around the world sharing kindness and goodwill through their creative endeavors.
Lindsey invited me to share a project, and I immediately thought of a community effort I was a part of through my church. The Relief Society ( the women's charitable organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) in my little corner of the world was making cloth dolls to donate to the local children's hospital.
These dolls are used by medical professionals as a communication tool for explaining procedures to a child or diagnosing a child's discomfort. The child is then given the doll, and often a little hospital gown for the doll, as their own to hold and keep.
As you can see, the pattern is extremely simple. The body and gown patterns can be found here: http://hopkinschildrens.org/Cloth-Dolls-Blankets-Pillow-Cases/
Dozens of women sewed the doll bodies from fabric scraps, fat quarters, and extra pillow cases. Then last Saturday we met together to stuff them and sew up the final seam.
By the door of classrooms throughout the church building, women could pick up unstuffed dolls to stuff or stuffed dolls to sew. As we listened to messages on subjects such as family relationships and charity from wonderful speakers, we worked.
I especially loved seeing the joy of the women as they worked. Charity is always like that: Efforts to bring joy to others inevitably makes the giver as happy (or happier) than the receiver.
As the morning went on, it was so exciting to see more and more completed dolls!
The goal was to make 125 dolls. We were thrilled to discover that this incredible group of women far surpassed our goal, making a total of 288 dolls to donate!
These sweet, important dolls are used in hospitals all over the world. This is an excellent way to serve individually, in a small group, or as a larger community to bring joy to children in need. The materials are inexpensive, and the sewing is simple.