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Socks and Hats for the Homeless – Martina Childress Continues a Lifetime of Community Service


Knitting Socks and Hats for the Homeless – Martina Childress Continues a Lifetime of Community Service

During college in the 1980s, my call to volunteering began as a youth leader while also mentoring pregnant teens. After moving to Maryland, I was a reading mentor in the D.C. public school system and mentored/supported unwed mothers. While raising my family, I shifted to volunteering at school and after a school parent passed away from a heart attack, I learned about the American Heart Association’s Little Hats, Big Hearts program and their call to the public to crochet/knit red hats for newborns to bring awareness to heart disease—the number one killer of Americans—and congenital heart defects, the most common type of birth defect in the U.S. After further research, I found the American Heart Association was pleasantly overwhelmed with hat donations, so I pivoted, using my love for crocheting to crochet hats for the homeless in the Washington, DC metropolitan region.

Over the last five years, half of the hats I have donated to local shelters and outreach programs were crocheted with yarn donated by my coworkers. In 2022, I read that socks, in addition to helping to prevent medical issues, can provide warmth, comfort, and a sense of dignity to someone in need. I thought, why not help keep the homeless warm from head to toe? I reached out to my work angels and asked them to join me by donating new or gently used clean socks. To honor CBM’s 100th anniversary which we celebrated in 2021, I set my goal at donating 100 pairs of socks and 100 hats. With CBM’s enormous support, I was able to donate 128 pairs of socks and 100 hats to So Others Might Eat, this winter. I will be retired when CBM celebrates its 200th anniversary but that’s not stopping me from setting my next goal!

When you crochet/knit for homeless people, you don’t just keep them warm. You let them know that they do have value and are worth keeping warm. The least donated items at most homeless shelters are new socks and new underwear.

Councilor, Buchanan & Mitchell has kept an active commitment to serving the local community for many years. Our industry-recognized program is founded on the efforts of team member volunteers who devote their time and resources to improving the lives of those around us. Click here to read more about CBM in the Community.

Councilor, Buchanan & Mitchell (CBM) is a professional services firm delivering tax, accounting and business advisory expertise throughout the Mid-Atlantic region from offices in Bethesda, MD and Washington, DC.   

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