Featured Non-Profit Organization: Warm Up America #WarmUpTogether
A teal green box with white text that reads: Warm Up America! Join us! Knit Picks and WeCrochet. The charity that warms peoples' lives. #WarmUpTogether

WeCrochet is teaming up with our sister brand Knit Picks to encourage our community to craft for a cause. We are supporting Warm Up America! (WUA), the charity that warms peoples’ lives, and encouraging donations to this important organization. To participate, knit or crochet any of the following:

  • 7″ x 9″ rectangle (any gauge, any stitch)
  • Finished blankets, from throw and lapghan size and larger
  • Or choose from WUA’s list of current needs

Then send your finished donations to Warm Up America!

Warm Up America
3740 N Josey Ln Suite #152
Carrollton, TX 75007

Learn more about Warm Up America!

On the left, A picture of volunteers holding up an afghan made of various knitted and crochet squares. On the right, hats hang on a tree, with a tag that says "take me, I'm yours."

In 1992, Evie Rosen had an idea. 

How Warm Up America! was founded

A yarn shop owner who made blankets for homeless people, Rosen spent her spare time knitting afghans for her local shelter. “I can’t knit them fast enough to fill the need,” she said. “But I have an idea: What if we break down the task of making blankets to manageable parts so we can involve lots more people?” Warm Up America! was born. 

Warm Up America! Foundation (WUA!) is a non-profit organization that donates knit and crochet blankets and accessories to a variety of people in need. They train volunteers to work together to craft blanket panels, join them, organize them, and ship them to people who need them. The organization that started as one woman’s small vision has grown into more than she ever could have imagined.

On the left: Volunteers from the Warm Up America Makers Group sit with afghans on their laps. On the right: colorful knitted rectangles.

Warm Up America’s 7″ x 9″ rectangle panels

One key component of Rosen’s original plan was to encourage yarn crafters to make 7” x 9” knit or crochet panels. Rosen chose this very specific size because the panels could be joined together to make afghans in various sizes as needed. 

With a small panel size, the pieces could be completed quickly by crafters of nearly any skill level, and in any stitch, color, or gauge they liked, provided it met the final measurements. The small sections could then be joined all at once by volunteers and made into useful blankets. People loved this idea and she quickly had more donations than she could handle on her own.

With support from The National NeedleArts Association and Craft Yarn Council (CYC), the program became a national success, and the CYC now runs the foundation as their primary charitable organization.

How to get involved with WUA! or donate

Hundreds of thousands of people in need have received donations from WUA! over the years. The foundation receives requests from a variety of social service agencies, including homeless shelters, battered women’s shelters, American Red Cross chapters, veterans homes, senior centers, hospices, and religious organizations serving families and individuals in communities around the country. 

Text: Warm Up America! always accepts these knit and crochet items: Finished adult, child, and baby size blankets and lapghans for wheelchairs, adult hats, scarves, baby clothing, 7" x 9" knit and crochet sections.

Volunteers for WUA! can join their Facebook group, where crafters can share tips and tricks, and each Tuesday at noon central time the WUA! office does a live video unboxing in the group, sharing some of the donations that have arrived.

If you’d like to get involved, you can donate completed knit or crochet blankets, hats, scarves, gloves, and baby clothing, as well as the 7” x 9” blanket panels that WUA! is most known for. They also accept (and need) monetary donations (which have the added benefit of being tax-deductible). 

Find out more about WUA! and how to make, donate, and share at their website: Warm Up America!

About this Article

WeCrochet Magazine cover - Issue 1

This article was originally printed in Issue 1 of WeCrochet Magazine.


32 comments

  1. Carrie P / January 28, 2020 / Reply

    I have been donating to them for the last year. My Brava beanies will be sent to them.

    • Heather Mann / January 28, 2020 / Reply

      Fantastic!!

  2. MiriamR / March 20, 2020 / Reply

    I knit and crochet for charity and would be thrilled to make hats and squares for this wonderful cause. May you all stay safe and may our creativity be a light during these dark times.

  3. Christine Magazzeni / August 25, 2020 / Reply

    I. Will. Be. Making. Squares,. For. Warm. Up. America. Foundation.

  4. Hillary Joffe / September 1, 2020 / Reply

    Good morning-
    My name is Hillary Joffe and I live in Florida.

    I have a warehouse full of yarn and I would like to donate some of it to your organization. Please let me know if you are interested and where I can send it to you.

    • LISA Cornell / December 14, 2020 / Reply

      Hello Hillary,
      The Abundance of Love group in The Villages, Florida makes items for Warm Up America. Our group leader, Jennifer Smith, is always in need of yarn. Because of donations of yarn from so many kind folks, we are able to continue our efforts to help those less fortunate. You can contact Jennifer at:
      Jpsmith5@comcast.net. There are 4 Abundance of Love groups here in The Villages, FL including the one in Lady Lake, FL. These retired ladies get a huge amount of items made. Thanks for listening.

      • Heather Mann / December 14, 2020 / Reply

        Hi Lisa, Thanks for letting us know. I’d be happy to send some yarn. 🙂 -Heather

  5. Hill Venus / September 22, 2020 / Reply

    Good afternoon,
    My name is Venus and I just joined the site. I will be sending 7 by 9 squares soon to support the cause.

  6. Fransrosegarden@gmail.com / September 26, 2020 / Reply

    I have hats where do I send live in Tacoma WA

    • Heather Mann / September 28, 2020 / Reply

      Hi! You can send your finished hats to: Warm Up America!

      Warm Up America
      3740 N Josey Ln Suite #152
      Carrollton, TX 75007

  7. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    how can i donate

    • Heather Mann / November 2, 2020 / Reply

      Hi Aubrey! We’re done doing this particular drive, but you can always donate to Warm Up America.

      To participate, knit or crochet any of the following:

      7″ x 9″ rectangle (any gauge, any stitch)
      Finished blankets, from throw and lapghan size and larger
      Or choose from WUA’s list of current needs: https://warmupamerica.org/make/current-needs/
      Then send your finished donations to Warm Up America!

      Warm Up America
      3740 N Josey Ln Suite #152
      Carrollton, TX 75007

  8. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    how can i join and sign up

  9. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    and who do you give these projects to

    • Heather Mann / November 2, 2020 / Reply

      send your finished donations to Warm Up America!

      Warm Up America
      3740 N Josey Ln Suite #152
      Carrollton, TX 75007

  10. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    ok thank you so i just make 7×9 inch squares

    • Heather Mann / November 2, 2020 / Reply

      Yep, you got it! You can always visit warmupamerica.org for more info! They have lists of different projects they are currently collecting projects for, but they always take 7×9″ rectangles.

  11. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    i live in Houston Texas how can i get my things i made to you i am a kid and i have a club but i don’t have much options

  12. Aubrey / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    ok thank you so much i just want to help those in need

  13. Heather Mann / November 2, 2020 / Reply

    Okay, I’m emailing you, Aubrey!

  14. Aubrey / November 4, 2020 / Reply

    if you get a email from my friend Taryn she is in the crochet club she is the head with me she started the club

  15. Taryn Gill / November 4, 2020 / Reply

    Hello my name is Taryn I am the person that created the crochet club and I herd Aubrey wanted me to talk to you and get to know and how you would like to help us with the crochet club and I would like to meet up with you sometime me you and aubrey.

  16. Goble Pam / November 6, 2020 / Reply

    Granny squares??? They are actual squares. 7×9 is a rectangle??? Will you accept Granny Squares?

    • Heather Mann / November 9, 2020 / Reply

      Hi Pam, they don’t accept granny squares alone, but you can stitch them into a blanket and submit them. Or modify them so they fit in a 7×9″ scheme.

  17. Bella / December 3, 2020 / Reply

    Can I get service hours for submitting a 7 by 9 rectangle?

    • Heather Mann / December 3, 2020 / Reply

      Hi Bella, You’ll have to check with your program director to see if this counts for service hours.

  18. Juliana / May 3, 2021 / Reply

    Hi, I’m student doing this project, and do you accept tapestry scraps that are smaller than 7×9″?

    • Heather Mann / May 3, 2021 / Reply

      Hi Juliana, any squares you submit need to be 7×9″ Hope that helps!

  19. Juliana / May 3, 2021 / Reply

    Okay, thank you! For the smaller scraps, can I turn them into a small blanket instead? Thank you!

    • Heather Mann / May 3, 2021 / Reply

      Yes, I’m sure that would work! 😀 If you need more help, check out their website: warmupamerica.org.

  20. Dottie H. / October 3, 2021 / Reply

    Hello! I just learned of your organization through a YouTube channel that I subscribe to. Her campaign was from January 2021 called Hooked For Hope. Crocheting 7″×9″ sections and sending them in to WUA!. I’m not sure if that particular campaign is still going on, but I will be sending in 7″×9″ sections. I am so happy I learned of your organization. I was recently thinking about what I was going to do with all the scrap yarn I have. Now I know what I’m going to do with it.

  21. Kathy Nylin / October 11, 2021 / Reply

    I guess there is no option to donate locally? I’ve been making hats for many years and donating to cancer centers, rescue missions, detention centers, hospitals, women’s shelters. I just donated 170 made over the summer. I’d love to support you but the cost of postage is exorbitant. I’ve been knitting and crocheting for over 60 years. Love it.

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