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Help Children Stay Warm With Your Knit or Crochet Skills

Seeking volunteers to handcraft hats, scarves and more to help charity provide for the children they serve.

ST. CHARLES, Ill. – Crafters nationwide are sought to participate in the 21st annual Crochet & Knit-A-Thon (CKAT) now through Dec. 14. The CKAT is part of the larger Snug Hugs for Kids clothing drive.

Handcrafted winter apparel sized to fit children 1 – 7 years old are needed most, however, clothing sized to fit children 8 - 18 years old are also welcomed.

  • Hat and scarf sets, or separates
  • Sweaters, slippers, and afghans
  • Baby items (sweaters, caps, layette sets and blankets)

Donations of handcrafted items can be mailed to the event’s sponsor, Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops’ corporate office at 3815 E. Main St., Suite D, St. Charles, IL 60174, dropped off at any Merlin 200,000 Miles Shop in Illinois or Wisconsin, or brought to the one day CKAT appreciation event that will be held on Saturday, Nov. 4, at Resurrection Lutheran Church in Aurora, Ill.

All participants are encouraged to register, especially those who will attend the local CKAT event to spend time with fellow crafters and view the items being donated. Registration forms can be obtained by emailing wecare@merlins.com or obtained at select yarn shops in the Chicagoland area. Merlin is also seeking individuals or groups wishing to volunteer their time by working at the event. Knitting or crochet skills are not required to volunteer and interested parties are encouraged to email wecare@merlins.com for more details.

Snug Hugs for Kids provides winter clothing to the 40,000+ children served each year by Children’s Home + Aid, a leading provider of quality programs and services to families in need. The much needed clothing protects children from the snow and winds during winter and better enables them to attend school or play outside.

"For the past 20+ years, caring volunteers have dedicated their time and materials to handcraft thousands of beautiful items for the children served by our charity partner, Children’s Home + Aid. I wish I could share with every volunteer the children’s joy when they receive a handmade gift made especially for them," said Merlin’s Marketing Director, Penny McDowell.

On Dec. 14, 2017, Merlin franchisees, corporate staff and vendor partners will deliver the crafted items and donations to strategically located Children’s Home + Aid family centers. Over 30 Merlin vans and vendor trucks will form a caravan to deliver an anticipated 9+ tons of clothing.

About Children’s Home + Aid

Children’s Home + Aid is a leading child and family service agency in Illinois. The organization helps children recover their health, their hope, and their faith in the people around them. We link children to a network of opportunity and care, to extended family, teachers, mentors, and the resources of the neighborhood and community. For more than 130 years, the organization has gone wherever children and families need them, and where that work has been proven to be most effective: at home, in the classroom, in the neighborhood, in the course of daily life. The organization has offices located across Illinois and serves more than 40,000 children and families in over 60 counties each year.

About Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops

Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops offer a neighborhood approach to automotive service and provides both repair and maintenance services as well as tire replacement and tire services. Merlin’s DRIVE FOR 200,000, the industry’s most comprehensive and affordable maintenance program, supports vehicle owners thousands of miles beyond the usual manufacturer’s maintenance requirements and has positioned Merlin as the leader in vehicle longevity. Founded in 1975, Merlin is headquartered in St. Charles, Illinois. In February 2014, Driven Brands acquired Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops. For more information, please visit www.merlins.com.