Our philanthropy efforts assist local organizations through hands-on projects and contributions.
Sweet Dreams for Seniors
For the second year, Kansas City Athenaeum members have volunteered to support the Sweet Dreams for Seniors Pillowcase Project at The Sewing Labs. Our members completed 144 pillowcases sewn from fabric provided by The Sewing Labs. The pillowcases are delivered to local senior centers with each resident receiving one made from holiday fabric and the other from everyday fabric. Last year The Sewing Labs rallied local volunteers to produce 618 pillowcases, and their goal is to deliver 800 pillowcases this year.
The Benefits of Teamwork
Kansas City Athenaeum members have been working since June to fulfill community needs when winter arrives. Yards and yards of fleece were generously given by The Sewing Labs for this project to produce more than 300 fleece hats sewn by our members as home projects. These hats, along with dozens of scarves, are being donated to Amethyst Place, Missouri Girls Town, True Light Family Resource Center, Veterans Community Project, the Clothes Closet at Central Presbyterian Church and other organizations making requests for those in need. Learning about our distribution plan, The Sewing Labs contributed 200 sets of fleece hats and scarves that had been sewn last winter in a volunteer project which included 82 sets sewn by our members. Left over fleece pieces were used to make 40 gift bags for a project at Amethyst Place where children can select jewelry to give to their mothers for Christmas. The jewelry was donated by members and friends.
Helping Truman Medical Center
Kansas City Athenaeum members have been knitting and crocheting to fill requested needs at University Health Truman Medical Center. More than 800 infant hats have been donated since January. Members have also knitted and crocheted booties, thumbless mittens, and baby blankets. This project contributes toward the newborn care needs at the hospital. Other ongoing projects include sewing 48 totes and 70 infusion pump bags for the medical center, plus 325 eyeglass cases for the eye clinic.
Helping the Homeless
Since January our members have sewn 145 KC Community Bags for The Sewing Labs in their partnership with Volunteer KC who printed canvas fabric with emergency resources for homeless individuals. One side of the bag has a Kansas City street map, and the other side lists the locations for assistance resources. In addition, Kansas City Athenaeum gave monetary donations in January to local organizations aiding the homeless and a monetary donation in February supporting the homeless warming center set up at Bartle Hall.
Protective Face Masks
Kansas City Athenaeum members devoted hundreds of volunteer hours in their homes in response to COVID-19 protection needs. Those efforts produced more than 4,000 face masks which were distributed by The Sewing Labs of Kansas City to day care centers, schools, senior centers, and other places making urgent requests.
Suffragists Coloring Book Sponsor
Kansas City Athenaeum donated $3,300 in January 2020 to enable the Kansas City Public Library to print 5,000 Suffragists Coloring Books in celebration of the 19th Amendment Centennial. The coloring book was given free to children at the library to educate them on the efforts of eight Kansas City women in their pursuit to gain the right to vote. Due to this year's COVID-19 limitations, Girl Scouts were able to use the coloring book as an at-home activity to earn their "Votes for Women" badge.
The coloring book can also be downloaded from the library’s website at https://kchistory.org/coloringkc/19th.