What to send
Would you like the short answer?
The longer answer is below, but first let me offer an explanation.
I made my first trip to this country in 1994. I know, I know — “Hey, Mr. IBOL Guy, Americans weren’t really welcome in Iraq in 1994 — WTH?” I went into the Kurdish region back then, doing homework for a school assignment (really!). I saw that nothing was every thrown away. Everything was re-used — bottles, packing material, tires, anything and everything. Iraq was, at that time, under international sanctions, the economy was hurting, and little was being produced in Iraq and little seemed to be coming into Iraq.
People made due. It’s not like they had a choice.
So, really, I think anything and everything sent will be used, even today. I thought about trying to lay out a list of what / what not to send, but really, I think it makes more sense to talk about it instead.
Do send solid colors and simple prints.
Don’t worry about sending that orange fabric with green pineapples. It’ll get used.
America, I know, can be the land of crazy prints. Iraq and Afghanistan just aren’t that crazy. Maybe less on the people prints, the animals, the flags, etc. Simple, and solids, are good, but prints work, too.
Do send bulk or big pieces of fabric.
Don’t worry about sending the pieces and parts from that project you started but realize you’ll never get it. Those 8000 one-inch hexagons you cut out 7 years ago? OK, maybe not those, necessarily.
Do send other things, like thread, needles, buttons, beads, etc. Thinking about anything and everything that someone can use to make something by hand or by machine.
Don’t worry about the kind of scissors, or what size bobbin it’s on. Someone will figure something out. This project is about raw materials. Whatever it is, it’ll get used.
Do look around and see if you have heavier fabrics, too.
Don’t worry about batting.
And do smile. This is suppose to put a warm feeling in your belly. And when all else fails, think big.