Lindsey Mays – Staff Writer
Did you know that February is American Heart Month? The awareness is being spread in a very unique way around the country by many volunteers. Little Hats-Big Hearts, is an organization that allows volunteers to crochet or knit hats for infants across the country. This organization began in Chicago in 2014 and has grown significantly in popularity. Now the organization touches the lives of thousands of families in more than 40 states. These volunteers have teamed up with the American Heart Association, in collaboration with The Children’s Heart Foundation to celebrate American Heart Month. Thousands of red hats have been knit or crocheted for babies born in the month of February. The idea is to empower mothers to live heart healthy lives and to guide their children to do the same.
One of Clarion University’s students participated in the efforts of this celebration. Sara Smerkar, a sophomore communication major, put her talents to great use over the holiday break and crocheted 40 red hats all by herself!
“I found out about Little Hats-Big Hearts on social media. I thought that it was a great cause to support. I knew how to crochet, so I decided to put my talents to use. I crocheted 40 hats from December until the middle of January.”
It was important to Sara to have her hard work go into the hands of local families. Upon completion of the hats, she took them to UPMC northwest of Seneca, Pennsylvania which will benefit babies from the Venango and Clarion counties.
“It was very rewarding to take my hats to a local hospital. I could have sent my hats to the general place, but I wanted them to go to local babies. It was such a great experience and I will definitely try to participate next year.”
The driving force of this campaign is to raise awareness and provide resources to families about heart health in order to promote awareness of Congenital Heart Defects. This small symbol has a great impact on many people. Want to participate in this great cause next year? Find out more information at www.heart.org, by searching “Little Hats-Big Hearts” on the home page.