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Comfort for Critters

~ Celebrating 10 Years & 57,000+ Blankets ~

May 2018 ~ CRITTER NEWS!

I hope everyone is as excited as I am to see good weather finally arriving! My gardens are springing back to life, and it's a wonderful stress-release to putter around them in the evening. Of course sitting by a fire, crochet hook and yarn in hand, is the perfect way to end the day. I hope each one of you have something similar to help you relax and enjoy life!

As I sit and watch the flames, I've realized that CFC is growing by leaps and bounds, quite apart from any effort by me. Donating well over 1,000 blankets in a month is the "new normal", so I need to start preparing for this and even higher numbers! About half of the blankets we donate every month come from volunteers in the Chicago area, since this is where CFC began and where we get the most press attention. The other half of the blankets are from volunteers in the other 49 states, that have thankfully joined the team!  

Most of the local volunteers drop off the blankets at my home, and it's these donations that I would like to really focus on shipping out each month (that's 500-800 blankets!). I'd like to encourage out of state volunteers to donate their blankets within their own state, either to a shelter right down the street, or by shipping them to a shelter in their state. Shipping them in-state will cost much less than shipping them to Illinois, especially for boxes coming from the west or east coast! Please always let me know when you do this, so that I know what to ship from Illinois! I've put together a "Help Wanted" article which will run in this, and future, newsletters with more information. Please do let me know if you have any questions or concerns about this request!

I'm continuing to try and raise funds to pay for shipping the local blankets to shelters by selling a handful of blankets I personally make, with leftover yarn, on Etsy and Amazon. I've also added earrings, made from the charms I occasionally send to volunteers (maybe you received one?), to these websites. I'm even considering T-shirts (see "Superpower" design at top), to give non-crafty people a way to help out homeless pets. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are always welcomed (info@comfortforcritters.org)!

A big thank you goes to everyone that helped out this month. You know who you are! Maybe you donated blankets, made a shelter delivery or dropped off yarn at my home. You're part of the village that makes CFC work, and it wouldn't work at all without you!!!

                   Happy Mother's Day!

                                   Linda

Your Beautiful Creations!

Shelters who received our blankets in april

A Forever Home - Tavares, FL

All 4 Animals Rescue - Mishawaka, IN

Almost Home - Elk Grove Village, IL

Anderson Animal Shelter - South Elgin, IL

Animal Welfare League - Chicago Ridge, IL

ARF-IL - Lisle, IL

Capital Humane Society - Lincoln, NE

Cat Guardians - Lombard, IL

Catnap from the Heart - LaGrange Park, IL

Chicago Animal Care & Control - Chicago, IL

Cocheco Valley Humane Society - Dover, NH

Columbia County Humane Society - Portage, WI

Connecticut Humane Society - Newington, CT

Dakota's Dream Animal Rescue - Winchester, VA

DAWS - Bethel, CT

Delaware Humane Society - Rehoboth Beach, DE

Dharma Rescue - Torrance, CA

DuPage County Animal Control Shelter - Wheaton, IL

Emerald City Pet Rescue - Seattle, WA

Fat Cat Rescue - North Chicago, IL

Friends of Felines - Stamford, CT

Georgetown Animal Health Center (Brandywine SPCA) - Georgetown, DE

Good Mews Animal Foundation - Marietta, GA

Grace Animal Rescue - El Segundo, CA

Harmony House for Cats - Chicago, IL

Hinsdale Humane Society - Hinsdale, IL

House Rabbit Society of Chicago - Westchester, IL

Humane Society of Greater Nashua - Nashua, NH

Humane Society of Whitley County - Columbia City, IN

Kansas City Pet Project - Kansas City, MO

Kent Animal Shelter - Calverton, NY

Kindred Kitties - Kenosha, WI

Lawrence County Humane Society - New Castle, PA

Little Shelter Animal Rescue - Huntington, NY

Lulu's Locker Rescue - Frankfort, IL

Marion County Humane Society - Ocala, FL

Mary's Kitty Korner - Granby, CT

Misty Eyes Animal Center - Avon, IN

Morgan County Humane Society - Berkeley Springs, WV

Naperville Area Humane Society - Naperville, IL

Nebraska Humane Society - Omaha, NE

New Hampshire SPCA - Stratham, NH

North Shore Animal League America - Port Washington, NY

Orillia Animal Center / Ontario SPCA - Orillia, ON

PAWS - Norwalk, CT

PAWS Chicago - Chicago, IL

Pets Plus - Mays Landing, NJ

Red Door Animal Shelter - Chicago, IL

Rescue Me - Lexington, KY

Salem Animal Rescue League - Salem, NH

Sammy's Clubhouse Ferret Rescue - Spokane, WA

Saving Cats & Kittens in Michigan - Westland, MI

Seattle Area Feline Rescue - Shoreline, WA

Tails Humane Society - DeKalb, IL

Tree House Humane Society - Chicago, IL

Unleashed Pet Rescue - Mission, KS

Wabash County Animal Shelter - Wabash, IN

Washington County / Johnson County Animal Shelter - Johnson City, TN

Westchester Animal Health Center - Malvern, PA

West Suburban Humane Society - Downers Grove, IL

Will County Humane Society - Shorewood, IL

Wisconsin Humane Society - Green Bay, WI

Wisconsin Humane Society - Racine, WI

For a complete list of shelters we support - click here!

Pets you are helping!

thank you from ...Chenango SPCA!

This shelter is great about sending us "thank you's" and sending us pictures! I just love sharing these with all our volunteers and supporters. I hope you enjoy the comments...as much as I do!

     

"Thank you so much for our new box of blankets! We are at 143 cats and kittens today, which is a lot but better than last month. Last month we adopted out 59 cats and kittens, most of which had one of your amazing blankets."

"Please once again thank all your amazing volunteers, you included for the donation of blankets and toys. It is so much fund watching the "kids" pick out their blankets. You will see Judy and Spotty having a blast! We did have to tell them only one each, since they have to learn to share. We're not sure if Spotty has ever had a catnip toy before. He played with it for what seemed like hours. At 18+ pounds he was more interested in his toy than food. That says a lot about your gift."

"Here is a picture of Baisley, she was adopted on April 12th, and as you can see her blanket is much loved. Baisley and the other cats have enjoyed having their own blankets and the staff have seen a difference in some of the cats! Again, thank you and ALL your amazing volunteers for what they do."

~ Chenango SPCA in Norwich, NY

Thank you to ALL our volunteers and supports for making these "critters" comfortable and helping these shelters. They are doing such worthwhile work in the world. It's a better place because of them and because of YOU!

 

Deliver to your local shelter for a fun experience!

I try to encourage volunteers to bring their blankets directly to their local shelter, whenever this is possible. One of the reasons is that they get to directly hear the "thank you's" and "oohhs & aahhs" over their blankets. Elaine P-S. of Port Jefferson Station, New York is a new volunteer that took me up on my suggestion to visit her local shelter.

She got her son Joseph (on the right in the picture) and his good friends Andrew (pictured in the hat) and Joseph (not pictured) involved making fun and colorful blankets and then encouraged them to visit a shelter with her, to drop them off.

The "Little Shelter Animal Rescue" in Huntington, New York was close by and very accommodating. When they visited to deliver their hand-made blankets and treats for the pets, they were treated to a full tour of the facility and got to speak with many staff, volunteers and pets! Elaine reports, "the boys had a fabulous time and will be making more blankets for a return trip." Many of the shelters will be happy to give you a tour, especially if you call ahead to say you are coming. It's fun to see the blankets in use! Elaine also reported back the the boys each received certificates for their support of the shelter and a "wonderful experience."

Please consider directly donating your blankets, if you are able (and let me know if you do!). I'd love for you to see firsthand our mission in action!

more Shelter "thank you's" . . .

  • "Thank you so much for your very generous donation of blankets for the animals at our shelter. You do such a kind thing for animals awaiting forever homes. Thank you so much...with gratitude!" ~  Wyandot County Humane Society -  Upper Sandusky, OH
  • "Thank you for your recent gift of fabulous blankets donated to Katz 4 Keeps. We appreciate your group and your mission of 'Comfort for Critters', for your time and talent spent on creating the blankets for the comfort of our beloved felines. Our cats of all ages love sleeping on and under your blankets, and our 'Luv 'Em Bunch' socializers (children 12-17) enjoy swaddling our tiny kittens in your wonderful blankets. Thank you for your role in our success." ~ Katz 4 Keeps - Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
  • "The Greater Chicago Ferret Association would like to thank you for your generous gift of shelf mats and floor mats that you recently donated to the shelter. Your donation will help us and we are extremely grateful for your continued generosity and ongoing support. Thank you so much for thinking of us!" ~ Greater Chicago Ferret Association - Lyons, IL 
  • "Thank you so much for the donation of blankets to Stitches for Mitchell County!! Three cats will be going home with one today. You truly are a blessing!!" ~ Stitches for Mitchell County - Camilla, GA
  • "Thank you so very much! We very much appreciate it when we receive your blankets! The animals REALLY love them...especially with cooler weather approaching they will be very useful!" ~ Cedar Bend Humane Society - Waterloo, IA

Our amazon & Etsy Blankets Make Great Gifts!

Here's an easy way to help us ship blankets and find a great gift for the animal-lover in your life.

Purchase one of our exclusive "Remnants Reborn" blankets, which are made by Linda, CFC's founder, using only remnant yarn, leftover after making shelter blankets. They are sold on Amazon and Etsy at a price that covers the shipment of a box of blankets. The recipient will receive a beautiful blanket and learn that a big box of blankets is being shipped to an animal shelter because of the purchase!

This card is included with their gift blanket:

A beautiful blanket PLUS sponsoring a shipment of blankets, equals a meaningful gift for any pet lover!  

                                                                    Click here for more info!


We are now donating over 1,000 blankets regularly every month,which is awesome! It's also A LOT of blankets to filter in and out of my house every month (not to mention all the fleece and yarn donations that go in, and back out!).

With this in mind, please consider donating your blankets directly to a shelter near you. This is especially helpful if you're out of state. Often I receive a box of blankets (with $25 of postage on it!) and I need to turn around and ship it back out (for another $25!), sometimes to the same state it came from!

I can help you find a shelter near you, and will do all the work getting then signed up. If you choose a shelter from our website list, I can promise you that in-state shipping will be less costly than sending them to me.

Benefits to donating your blankets locally and directly:

  • Cheaper than shipping them to Illinois (if you're out of state)!
  • You can ask for a tax receipt and possibly write off the donation (please check with your tax professional).
  • If you personally drop them off, you get to see all those little faces saying "thank you!"
  • You'll also get to see how much the staff appreciates the blankets!

If this doesn't work for you PLEASE continue to send me your blankets, and I will happily ship them out!  I get shipments every day, so this doesn't need to entirely stop....even a few less boxes will help a lot. Thank you for giving it some thought!

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Together we have donated 57,390 blankets!

april Blessings...

1,369 Blankets

63 Shelters

21 States

105 Volunteers

  • We comforted over a thousand homeless pets in April, by donating 1,369 blankets!
  • 63 different shelters, in 21 states (& Canada), received our blankets, and most received a handful of toys as well.
  • These blessings were only possible, due to the 105 volunteers (not including some groups!) and supporters who helped last month. Thank you!

The Finishing Touch!

One of the many things I appreciate about our blankets is that they really show off the love and caring we have for homeless pets. Crafters tend to forget that not everyone is a “fiber artist”, and so when an adoptive family meets a dog or cat, wrapped in a beautiful hand-crafted blanket, they are impressed! They are even more thrilled to find out their new family member gets to take it home!

A great finishing touch to a blanket is a decorative trim. It’s a wonderful way to add color, cover some uneven side-stitches or make a small blanket a bit bigger. Here are four ideas for the perfect trim to add to the crocheted blankets you may be working on. Try one of these, or just do a simple half-double crochet around the perimeter. The only “trick” is to make sure you put three half-double crochets into every corner stitch. Enjoy!

Edging Ideas Here!

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What CFC Volunteers Have to Say....

Thank you for all the great comments left on the website. I read each one and I'm thrilled to work alongside such a great group of volunteers. Here's just a sampling of why other volunteers enjoy helping us, help homeless pets!

  • "I have adopted animals from this shelter in the past and love all they do to help rescue animals and find loving homes for them. I came across Comfort for Critters and felt I had to be a part of it. Using my past time to give deserving animals comfort makes me happy. I think the blankets will help because everyone, animals and humans alike, need a little comfort in their lives. I hope my blankets will provide comfort to some pets who need it." ~ Steph S. of Patterson, NY
  • "I feed and shelter the animals I can't take in, but I want to help those outside my area too. Our cats derive such comfort and joy from snuggling in blankets, so I know animals who haven't found their forever homes yet will too! Thank you so much for the work you do!" ~ Amanda O. of Cullman, AL
  • "I brought this up at our small group Bible study. ALL the ladies are animal lovers and we made 21 tied fleece blankets, and I crocheted 4 more! I think the beautiful blankets can draw attention to the beautiful pets available for adoption! I've been making blankets for homeless people for 10 years....decided it was time to help homeless pets too!" ~ Linda C. of Carnegie, PA
  • "Pets have feelings too! I look at my dog Sadie and can't imagine her not having a home. I think a blanket may help the homeless dogs and cats find some comfort."  ~ Nancy O. of Bloomingdale, IL
  • "I made these blankets because I wanted to put my stash of yarn and craft supplies toward a good cause. I love Comfort for Critters' message and mission. I think these blankets will help comfort animals and keep them warm. I hope it will give them a sense of familiarity to make the transition from the shelter to their new homes easier." Brittney W-Z.

A few friendly reminders...

  • Once you have some blankets made, please check  our "Shelters Supported" page to find a shelter near you (or at least in your state). Feel free to ship your blankets directly to the shelter, or drop them off, and just let me know how many you donated. Don't forget to ask for a tax receipt, since many of the shelters can provide this!

  • Don’t forget to leave your name and address on the blankets or materials you drop off at CFC headquarters in Glen Ellyn, IL so that I can send you a thank you note.

  • Remember that we are all juggling CFC, jobs and kids! I do reply to every inquiry, but it may take me a day or two. Thanks for your patience!

3 South 139 Sequoia Drive  Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

Linda Kastiel Kozlowski Founder & Owner 

info@Comfortforcritters.org