General Updates

2019: Looking Ahead

QuiltCon 2018 Michael Miller / Quilts for Cure Collaboration

Happy New Year, Quilts for Cure Rockstars!

First and foremost, THANK YOU to all you amazing quilters and donors who have given of your time, money, skills, and supplies this year. We are blessed to work with amazing companies like Aurifil thread, Michael Miller Fabrics, and Hobbs batting, but the day to day action comes from YOU.

2018 started and ended strong for Quilts for Cure, but we had a bit of a messy middle. We made 9 quilts with Micheal Miller Fabrics for QuiltCon 2018, collected blocks last February to make 30+ Operation Smiley Quilts (about 1/3 of which have been finished, and another third are with quilters now), and provided about 35 quilts (updated) to children across the country this year. Most of that quilt-giving happened right after QuiltCon and again at the end of the year. Our newest recipient was Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Aflac Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders who excitedly took a dozen quilts right before Christmas to distribute to their kiddos for the holiday.

We doubled our fundraising this year for a total of $1917 USD raised. Like last year, this money was used for two main goals: marketing (website, business cards) and shipping quilts / quilt kits.

Quilts for Cure 2018

The reason more of last year’s specific goals didn’t come to fruition was simple: lack of infrastructure. As of tonight, our Salesforce platform is nearly built, and it will enable us to stay exceptionally well organized in 2019 to make sure that requests— both for quilts and to make quilts— are tracked in a timely, efficient way. This platform will be complete by the end of the week so we are set up for success in 2019.

In 2019, my hopes for Quilts for Cure are simple:

  • Make more quilts (50+)

  • Raise the money needed to make and ship those quilts (about $5000)

  • Encourage kids with cancer, and their families, through the first two goals

Thank you for being part of this work with us. Please continue to support Quilts for Cure through your financial and quilty giving!

Go gold,

HollyAnne (And the QFC board)

Quilts for Cure 2018

Friday Fighters

Survivor to Advocate: An Interview with Andrea Tsang Jackson

Andrea Tsang Jackson Interview at Quilts for Cure

Quilts for Cure exists to raise awareness about childhood cancer and make quilts for kids with cancer. We honor Smiley Kylie Myers by making quilts to encourage other kiddos. A beautiful side effect of this work, is that quilters who are passionate about this cause are creating their own community. I love hearing the stories of all the quilters who are part of Quilts for Cure, but when Andrea sent me snippet of her story, I had to pull off the road and read it immediately. We have been honored to have many adult cancer survivors be part of our efforts to send quilts to kiddos with cancer, but as far as I know, Andrea is the first childhood cancer survivor to be part of our work. 

Here and Elsewhere Bee Quilt

Here and Elsewhere Bee Quilt

Andrea Tsang Jackson of 3rd Story Workshop is an amazing modern quilter who has a passion for storytelling. While her textile arts have focused on the stories of others (like the Here and Elsewhere Bee Quilt above and the Our Song Quilt below), I had the privilege to ask about her story for this interview. As a child, Andrea faced Ewing's Sarcoma, the same cancer that Kylie and Bailey had, and learned some beautiful truths about hope and community.

Andrea is an amazing story of hope and an asset to both the quilting and childhood cancer communities. Thank you for sharing with us, Andrea!

If you would like more information about Andrea's most recent project, Our Song Your Reflection, click here to learn about and consider supporting the project. And stay tuned for when the music video releases-- you'll be able to spot a Quilts for Cure project in the mix!

Andrea Tsang Jackson Interview at Quilts for Cure (Our Song Quilt)

(All photos curtesy of 3rd Story Workshop)

Operation Smiley

Collaborating with Kylie

Modern Sewciety's Mod Heart Block from her BOM. Modern Sewcialites Members can choose to make this block for #OperationSmiley 

Modern Sewciety's Mod Heart Block from her BOM. Modern Sewcialites Members can choose to make this block for #OperationSmiley 

Each year, 16,000 kids are diagnosed with cancer in the United States.

A school bus full of kids every day.

Almost no new drugs have been developed specifically for treating children since the 1980s. Instead, we treat kids with drugs made for adults, and the side effects include infertility, brain damage, blindness, secondary cancers, and death. We treat our children with poison and hope it kills the cancer first.

Some cancers, such as the brain cancer DIPG have a 0% survival rate.

Collaborating with Kylie - Quilts for Cure

The first time I read these statistics, I cried. Then I got really mad. Because of these statistics, Kylie died. Beautiful, bright, talented Kylie—one of the most wonderful students I ever had the privilege of teaching—missed her Broadway debut because of stupid cancer. I went to her funeral with my six week old baby boy strapped to my chest, and I cried some more. Out of the horrible shock of it all came a single question:

What can I do?

A mom. A maker. A teacher. Not a scientist, not a wealthy philanthropist, not a doctor.

Kylie was a dancer, a singer, and an artist. She had a huge heart for people. She was a natural, generous encourager.

Collaborating with Kylie - Quilts for Cure

I decided that I would fight cancer like Kylie did: with creativity, with encouragement, and with joy. I can push back against the darkness of cancer by listening to the stories of children and their families and sharing them with my creative community. I can push back by making quilts to keep kids warm and to make the hospital feel just a little happier. And, most importantly, I can invite other quilters to join me.

I can invite YOU to join me. There are 16,000 kids each year who need a quilt—we’ve got work to do!

This spring, we’ve set a modest goal: 16 quilts in honor of Kylie’s sweet sixteen. Since she’s not here to spread smiles, we’re going to do it for her. This project is called #OperationSmiley2018, and we want your help! Today, take two easy steps to fight back against childhood cancer. First, share what you’ve learned with another quilter and ask them to help, too. Second, make a block. 

My word of the year is COLLABORATION, and I want to work with you!

Together, let’s turn the quilting world gold for childhood cancer!

(Update since I started writing-- we're past 16 quilts already! But let's keep going! How many can we make to honor Kylie and her fellow fighters? 26? 56? 106? Let's find out!)

Collaborating with Kylie - Quilts for Cure