Monday, June 23, 2008

Interim House Contest Time


It's about that time again: my third annual Interim House contest! If you're new to it, this post should cover everything you need to know (and you can leave comments with questions). If you're an IH Contest veteran, I'll do my best to get the info. you're looking for at the top. Check for updates via the ih_contest label in the sidebar. I'll post about developments, update about prizes, etc.

Click below to read the whole entry -- if it's not already visible.

The basics
This contest will run until noon EST on Friday, August 8th, which happens to be my 43rd birthday. To enter, you need to mail a package (details follow) to Interim House. Please include a postcard from your area and consider a personal note -- the ladies like hearing about where the packages are coming from. Send me an email with a picture of its contents, and tell me who referred you (if applicable). My email ends with and starts with crazycatladymel (just switch the order and pop 'em together). Absolutely EVERYONE qualifies, no matter where you live or if you won last time.

On the 8th, I'll draw at least two names. The first winner will get to pick their prize, and the second winner will get the remaining prize.

Edit: See this post for prizes.

#1: Two skeins of Claudia Hand Painted yarn in fingering weight, colorway "Desert Dude." If I recall correctly, these two skeins alone are close to - if not over - a $50 value.

#2: Emergency Knitting bag in blue (I ordered it 6/24/08.) If a crocheter wins, I'll keep this for myself and order an emergency crochet bag, in the winner's choice of colors (if availabile). NOTE: Wonderful news -- Illiane's Corner will ship either a knit or crochet bag to the winner in their preferred color!

Bonus: Promote this on your blog (send me a link!), and I'll enter you a second time (button-thingy here). If someone enters and says you sent them, I'll enter your name again (as well as theirs, of course). Up to 5 total entries per person -- you can't beat that! Of course, you need to enter yourself for this to work!

What to send
According to Kathy, the social worker at IH, they never have enough circular needles in varying lengths, as follows:
  • circulars in size 11 and 13 for blankets 36",
  • circulars for pocketbooks which are 10-1/2 or 10 in a 24 inch
  • hat circulars which are 16 inches in maybe an 8 to 10-1/2
"We have beginners just learning and it usually takes the whole six months to get really comfortable knitting and purling. Felted bags work great to learn how to knit because holes just felt together and you get a handbag that is like magic."
They're always happy to get partial balls of yarn, and feel free to include them; however, for this contest, if sending yarn please consider sending complete skeins**. An assortment of accessories and tools would also qualify (including zippered lingerie bags for felting). A great thing that more than one person has done in the past is to put a kit together, with everything needed for a project: yarn, needles and pattern. The key: please send what you feel led to. Many people have sent large boxes, at least one filled up the back of her SUV and delivered the yarn in person. Most folks send a small-to-medium box or padded envelope. At minimum, please send at least 3 full-sized items (skeins of yarn and needles), or the equivalent. Shopping from your stash is encouraged!

**Please do not send ratty or stinky old yarn. It's totally fine to send on a style of yarn that you have in your stash but don't care to knit with (yarn that just doesn't speak to you), but not cool to send crap that no one should have to knit with. (This has never been a problem. I'm just trying to cover all the potential bases.)

Send stuff to:
Kathy Duffy, Social Worker
Interim House Inc.
333 W. Upsal St.
Philadelphia PA 19119

Why Interim House?
Interim House is a 6-month rehab facility in Philadelphia, PA, with both in- and out-patient programs. Kathy, the social worker at IH, added knitting & crochet to the therapy schedule a couple of years ago, and it's doing amazingly well. All the students start out with a simple washcloth project.

Here's a link to their blog, where you can see pics of some clients' work (never their faces, for privacy reasons). Any faces you see are staff or volunteers. Only current clients and those that have graduated and come back to help are allowed to use the donated products.

My background re: charities

I don't support a lot of charities. I know there are tons of wonderful ones, but since I worked for a (very similar to IH) charity that ended up being corrupt, I'm very slow and careful when it comes to picking groups to support.

I found out about IH via another blog that pointed me over to applekale's blog. Because of my background , I did a little research, and decided to take a chance. I chatted with Kathy quite a bit, and feel like this is a project I can get behind 100%. I like that the graduates return to show off projects and help new students.

I think each person has to make their own decisions about what charities to support (if they even go that route). I'm glad to have one that I can throw myself behind completely, and offer up my "testimony" to that effect, but understand if not everyone that reads this doesn't take my word for it, and either does their own investigation or selects another charity entirely. I hope I've shown enough character and integrity that my support of IH at least puts them on the possible list for some folks, but I don't take it personally if everyone doesn't jump onto the bandwagon behind me.


Connie said...

Happy Birthday Mel! I just sent a big box over to IH, but now that I know they need circulars, I think I can find a least a couple to send.

Issy said...

This sounds amazing. Knitting has been a great thing for me when life gets rough, a really positive channel for anxiety, anger, fear, lonliness. And I got the Denise circular set, so I have several random circs that never get used anymore. I would much rather they be put to good use than sit in my drawer! Package soon to follow!

Issy said...

I have lots of circs that never get used since I got the Denise set. Knitting has been a very positive influence in my life. Happy to help!

Georgi said...

What a great idea! I will be sending a package later in the week and posting to my blog. I know that I have a few circular needles that I don't use, since I received my Options, now I have a place to send them.

sailorcross said...

This is wonderful! Having lived in a situation where rehab occurred on a regular basis, I know how having something positive, something to create, can have such an impact upon a person.

I'll be sending all my circular needles (probably about 5).

Thank you for pointing me in the direction of this wonderful cause.