For want of a blanket

This summer several of my family have plans for a great adventure. My ‘baby’ sister Sophie is going to spend 2-1/2 months in the Wollaitta area of Ethiopia, where two of my daughters were born. Sophie is a nurse who has volunteered in Ethiopia twice before. This time she will be volunteering at the Soddo Hospital, training nurses and helping out in any other way she can.

My mom and dad have been wanting to go on a mission trip to Africa for years, and they’ve decided this is the year. They will be joining Sophie in Ethiopia for a month, helping out at that same hospital. My mom is an OB nurse, and my dad is one of those useful sorts who can do almost anything, from wiring to construction to engine repair, so I am sure they will find lots to do. I am so thrilled that they are getting this chance and I can’t wait to hear about their adventures.

My folks have already met with an experienced volunteer who will be working there this summer as well. When Mom asked what they could bring to help on the OB ward, the volunteer mentioned basic things. Rubber gloves. Trash sacks.

And baby blankets.

The volunteer said that when women come to the hospital to give birth, they often come with nothing — absolutely nothing — for their babies. The staff at the hospital would love to be able to give those mothers one baby blanket each, so they could wrap their babies up before they take them home.

Can you imagine being so desperately poor that you could not afford a scrap of cloth in which to wrap your baby?

I cannot.

And so I want to send blankets to Africa.

Would you like to help me?

On February 1st I am hosting a blanket party here on my blog. If you would like to help me wrap up a few babies, I hope you’ll come and help me out. There will be a paypal link on the blog that day to make it easy for you to donate. Every penny of your money will go straight to Ethiopia. If you think your readers might be interested in wrapping a few babies themselves, I hope you’ll consider mentioning the party on your blog too, OK?
February 1st. Let’s see how many babies we can wrap.


  1. Oh, exciting! And how awesome that your family is going to help 🙂

  2. Are all the blankets going to be similar or are you going to accept handmade blankets/quilts?

  3. I’m going to write up a post about this and put it on my blog next Sunday for Sanctity of Human Life Sunday!

  4. I put a link on my blog!!
    I will be back for Feb 1 for sure!!!


  5. What a fabulous idea, Mary. I will link from my blog, fwiw.

  6. What a wonderful idea! I will link you on my blog and I’ll definitely see you on Feb 1st. Yeah!!

  7. that is so exciting!

  8. This is great!!! I have two sons adopted from Ethiopia, in addition to my homegrown crew for a grand total of five ages 8 to 13. So, I have a huge heart for Ethiopia! Are you accepting blankets, or just cash??? I would love to help! I will try to put a link on our adoption site, haven’t done that before!

  9. Mary,

    Do you want new blankets only, or can I send gently used blankets?

    My 2 year old has several baby blankets that he no longer uses.

    Thank you for doing this

  10. Mary, I JUST washed a couple of baby blankets that was planning to give to wayside, can I send them to you (or somewhere) instead???? Would it be easier to just paypal some instead, whichever is easier!

  11. We’ll get right on it-do you just mostly need the money for them to be purchased together or do you also want actual blankets?

  12. I guess I am like a few other commenters in that I am also wondering if I can donate some homemade blankets. Knitted or quilted, I am happy to do either!

  13. Oh – perfect! I needed something to write about today. I am honored to participate! Yay!

  14. Mary,

    This is a fantastic idea. I will defintely donate and link to your blog. I can’t wait to see how many blankets you can send.


  15. What a great idea. It’s my son’s birthday so I’ll be back to give on 1st Feb.

  16. Mary,
    What a great idea. After being in the villages in Ethiopia, one can see how much this would mean to the mothers. I put a link to you on my blog. I just love that you are doing this. Looking forward to nice weather to join you for soccer in the park!

  17. Mary,

    I want to join your blanket party ! Are you only using paypal? It would be easier for me to send you a money order. I’ve stopped using credit cards so I can be debt free. Please let me know.

    God bless you and your family for helping those poor mothers and their babies.


  18. Mary,
    What a great idea! We have put a link on our blog ” A Darling Life”
    -Justin (Solas4me)
    ” A Darling Life”

  19. I love this idea, and will direct folks your way on Blanket Day.

    Can you put up a reminder post a few days before? I am memory challenged!

  20. Can you email me a button to put in my side bar?