Photo By: Bailey Kay

Brock University’s chapter of Crafting for a Cure returns this year with accommodations that will allow students to be involved with the club during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Crafting for a Cure is a not-for-profit organization that strives to create a positive environment for children staying in hospitals. It relies on volunteers to prepare craft kits with pre-assembled supplies that kids can then finish on their own. It has grown to become a very large organization, now in contact with over 100 hospitals across Canada and in other countries.

Brock’s chapter was founded in 2014 and has remained strong since then. The club focuses on supporting the main organization by raising funds and providing volunteer opportunities to students, opportunities that have now changed during COVID-19.

“We are [working] towards a good cause, everything that we raise is still going to be used, [even if we are restricted to being online] the main organization is still working directly with these hospitals,” said Michael Storms, club president, “no matter what you do, you are going to be finding a way to help a child and hopefully after, we will be able to do it in person.”

In pre-COVID-19 times, the club would organize the kits by hosting ‘craft-a-thons’ where volunteers would form an assembly line and then set up supplies by cutting them to a specific length or placing parts together, for easier assembly.  

During this stage of the pandemic, the club will follow a similar format as last year; the club now meets online through Microsoft Teams, and still makes crafts when possible. The meetings consist of playing games, talking about events and fundraisers while staying craft-related. For example, last year’s crafts were made from supplies that were easily found at home, and the club made sock bunnies.

This year, the club is looking for new ways to work while following COVID-19 guidelines. Some potential ideas are movie nights, paint nights, and potential collaborative events with other clubs. Last year, there was a collaborative event with Art Collective, another club at Brock that is unfortunately not running this year due to the pandemic. 

The club is still waiting to see if outdoor events are possible. If they are, they are considering hosting outdoor crafting events, following appropriate safety guidelines, and preparing predetermined crafts that would then be boxed up for one of the organization’s representatives to pick up and donate to the hospitals on the club’s behalf.

If these events are not possible, being online does not mean that there are no volunteer opportunities. Students looking for volunteer experience are still able to get hours towards the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum (CWC).

“Even though volunteers are not able to enter hospitals at this time, students can come up with their own ideas and host a mini crafting event. The club will work as the medium for these ideas,” said Storms.

The club organizers have reported that the club is ideal for anyone looking for a positive space, or anyone hoping to join an organization that brings happiness to children that are hospitalized.   

For more information visit their Instagram page @brockcfc, or their website.