Friday, February 20, 2015

Reach Out Friday: Snuggles Project

The third Friday of every month is Reach Out Friday! Learn about ways that you can use crochet to help others through special charities and groups. Today we'll take a look at Snuggles Project!

When homeless animals arrive in shelters they are often very frightened. It's hard enough being a little critter alone in a big world, and now there are so many new noises, smells, animals, and people to be worried about. That's where Snuggles Project comes in. They seek to provide shelter animals with "snuggles", or small blankets/mats for them to use as a comfort item. The animal can cuddle up to their snuggle and feel just a bit safer. Great cause, right? Nobody wants to think about all those sweet little animals being so frightened when they don't have to be.

Mission Statement
"The Snuggles Project is well-known as a multi-beneficial project. The first, and most important, benefit is to the animals. After being given a Snuggle, a frightened and/or difficult to handle animal is able to become calm. This calming effect gives the animal and the caregiver time to learn how to handle the situation. We believe that this calming effect has saved the lives of many newly-sheltered animals.

The next benefit is to the shelter. The Snuggles provide a more homey environment for shelter visitors and staff. Most animal shelters have an industrial feel to them. This does not present a comfortable atmosphere for shelter visitors to stay very long. By softening the edges and adding color, visitors stay longer and can take more time to find someone to adopt. It also helps shelter staff to feel more at home and increases the amount of time that they want to spend with the animals.

Another benefit is the good feeling that the Snuggle maker (aka Snuggler) receives when they create something using a skill that they know and love for someone who really needs their gift. This personal benefit also reaches beyond the individual when they talk about the project with their friends and associates, when they teach someone else a new handcraft skill, when they find that they still have value to give something of themselves to the world.

Please join us and partake of the benefits yourself in the Snuggles Project."

Special Considerations
My recommendations for crocheting for cats are particularly relevant here and are useful to know for dogs as well. Also, Snuggles Project requests that you fill out a form to submit along with your snuggle. 

Reach Out!
Are you ready to snuggle some critters? Visit the Snuggles Project website and they will hook you up with all of the information you'll need. If you'd like you can also make a monetary donation. As a final note, a big thank you goes out to all of you who have adopted a shelter animal, enriching both their life and yours. If you've never adopted a shelter animal and you're looking for a new pet, I highly recommend doing so. Just look at how it's turned out for me...

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