2016 Cancer Challenge

      74 Comments on 2016 Cancer Challenge
October is almost here, you know what that means!
It is Cancer Awareness Month, and the 2016 Cancer Challenge is just around the corner!
This may be a long post, but it should answer most of your questions and  give you more detailed information on how it is organized.

Why are you doing the challenge?

Many / Most of us have been effected by cancer in some way. It is difficult to see someone go through cancer and/or chemotherapy. But with a community standing beside you it makes the battle slightly less daunting and scary.
In honor of my Uncle Jeff, who lost his battle in September of 2014,
I am hosting the 3rd annual Cancer Charity Challenge.

How does the challenge work?

It is pretty simple.
Basically, I am asking all of you to help make hats for cancer patients and cancer survivors.
The hats can be made for someone you know, someone your friends know,
a co-worker, teacher, neighbor, or even a complete stranger.
You can make many hats and donate them to your local cancer center.
If a cancer center is not in your area you can contact me and ship them my way. I will include them with my donation to the Cancer Center of Idaho.

How long does the challenge last?

The challenge will begin October 1.
A featured designer/pattern will be posted each day through the month of October.
You have through the end of 2016 to complete your hats and get them donated.

What type of hat should I make and what sizes?

You can use any hat pattern you like. People of all ages get cancer, so all sizes are needed. Teen and adult hats are most requested because they tend to fit more people.

Where can I get patterns?

This is the FUN part!!!
Each day throughout the challenge I will be posting a FREE hat pattern.
I have some amazing designers who are graciously offering their patterns for FREE in exchange for your donation. If you download a pattern you are pledging to make a minimum of 1 hat from that pattern for the challenge. If you download the pattern, please take a minute to visit the pattern designers facebook page and tell them thank you for their generosity.

 What type of yarn is recommended?

 The best yarns for chemo patients are soft and breathable yarns. It is also important that the yarn washes well. It is recommended to use cottonn blends (however, 100% cotton tends to be less soft) and/or acrylic. One of the favorites is Caron Simply Soft, Debra Norvelle, Lionbrand Homespun and/or Heartland, Red Heart Soft, Bernat Softee, you are probably getting the idea.
I have heard comments that wool hats can be very itchy and are not preferred.
Remember that it is important to use the correct yarn weight for the pattern you are following.

 What is my goal?

My goal is to simply help others and make it easy for you to do the same.
I started this challenge on a whim 2 years ago when I lost my uncle. Each year is improved and the numbers continue to grow. Last year over 33,000 hats were pledged. I am astounded with that succes and am hoping to match and beat  that number this year. So grab a friend and crochet away!

How do I pledge?

To pledge to make a hat simply download the pattern.
There will be 31 patterns available. If you download all 31 patterns you pledge to make 31 hats.
I am pledging to make 31 hats, one a day, sounds doable. But, if you can only make 1 hat, you are still making a difference, and I thank you for that.

Have Fun and Get More Involved

Make sure to share pictures of your finished hats of on our facebook page. This is not required, but it is fun to see what everyone else is making and see your own pictures shared too. When you share a picture please let me know what pattern it is from, I would love to tag that designer so they can follow the difference they are making.

Who are you Honoring?

Add a comment to this blog post to let everyone know who you are making hats in honor of.

Challenge Others

Do you know other crafters, crocheters or knitters?
Tag them in one of the facebook posts about the challenge, say “I challenge you to join!”

Get Started Early

The excitement and enthusiasm I see in everyone who has participated in the past is amazing. I have even had a few of you tell me that you already started. Last year someone post a hat they crocheted that had a beautiful cancer ribbon on it. She graciously shared the link that she used and the bonus is, it’s FREE. Click here to make a ribbon like the one below. These are great to add to your hats.
For your convenience I have included a chart that shows the colors that are used for some of the more common cancer awareness ribbons.

74 thoughts on “2016 Cancer Challenge

  1. Antonia Slaterbeck

    I’m joining for a distant family member, and local child Zak, I’d already told him I’d help before seeing this challenge when he asked for hats to be made for the local children’s hospital where he goes to chemo! He wants to turn them in!

  2. Karen Bustamante

    I have made a couple hats for my stepdad. He is palliative now, unfortunately, but still loves his hats! Thank you for doing this. I will continue to make hats and donate them to the local cancer center here in Red Deer Alberta, Canada.

  3. Kaycee

    I just lost my mother on September 1, 2016 after a short battle with cancer. I will be donating as many as I can in her memory!

  4. Lisa Jackson

    I’m joinging in memory of my grandmother Florence Osborne. She taught me to crochet when I was 14. She passed away from pancreatic cancer in 1988. I miss her dearly. I still have the yarn she taught me to crochet with

  5. Pat Walker

    I am honouring several people within this challenge: My Mom, brain cancer; my Dad, colon cancer; my cousins Janelle, lung cancer; Shaun, thyroid cancer, my uncle, prostate cancer; friends Al, esophageal cancer, Don, lymphoma,. There are more that aren’t listed. I am hoping to do a hat a day in the different colours to honor all cancer patients.

  6. Angela Levell

    I’ll be joining and pledging at least 1 hat each day. My mother is fighting lung cancer, my dad has had skin cancer, I’ve lost grandparents to cancer, and I have friends who are battling right now, I will be doing this in honor of all of them, and donating to the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center in Columbia, MO. Thank you so much for putting this challenge together, and thank you to the designers for donating patterns!!

  7. Hollie Bobo

    I am joining in honor of my father-in-law, Merton, who is battling colon cancer and my son’s 11 year old friend, William, who is currently losing his battle with brain cancer.

  8. Nancy Creek

    I will join in honor of my mom who just passed away last week. 12/16/73-9/23/16 She fought breast cancer for about 5 yrs I think.

  9. Clarissa

    I am making hats in memory of my son Tristan, he passed shortly after birth and since Oct 15th is National pregnancy/ Infants loss day I do it to honor him . It’s been five years since he’s been gone but I do something every October to honor him and since I recently got back into crocheting this is a great opportunity to honor my son and help others.

    1. SweetPotato3 Post author

      What a great way to honor him. I also participate in the 12 days challenge in December where hats are made to give to NICU’s for infants. I’d love to have you join us in those efforts as well.

  10. Cindy Gouldsbarry

    Im joining in honor of my husband. He has prostate cancer and started his second round of chemo today. (1 down, 5 more to go). He had his first round in January for 6 sessions at 3 week intervals.

  11. Mandie Lee

    I’m hoping to join in this year. After completing my last round of chemo today (Hodgkins lymphoma), this is a great way for me to pay it forward to my local cancer center.

  12. Judy Finder

    I am joining in honor of my dad who has lung cancer, a friend who was just diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer, and myself. I had uterine cancer but we caught it early and were able to get rid of it with a complete hysterectomy. I am pledging at least 31 hats. I love to crochet and this gives me some place to donate my hats. I am also in Idaho. I have donated some hats already this year to St. Luke’s Cancer center where I had my surgery.

    1. SweetPotato3 Post author

      Judy, so glad you hear about us and are joining in the challenge. Also, great to hear you caught yours early and had a good outcome. Enjoy the challenge! I know Boise will love to receive many hats from both of us 🙂

  13. Cindy

    I have lost a grandmother to cancer. My mom and myself are breast cancer survivors. So I am excited to participate in this hat challenge. Thank you for starting this two years ago and let’s see how high the counts goes this year!!

  14. Kathi

    I am taking the challenge in honor of my mom. She passed 9/5/2005 from brain cancer! I am looking forward to making a hat a day.

    Thanks for the challenge!

  15. JO

    I am currently battling cancer. October the 18th will make it two years and seven months. I am also planning to donate to the Cancer that I go to in up or of a great friend of mine that passed away in September 2015 from cancer along with health problems from that. Thank you, I received hats during the time I was completely bald and now I am beginning to lose my hair again.

  16. Betty Lewis

    I am joining in memory of several family members who sadly have lost the battle. My goal is to make a total of 78 hats for donation prior to December 15th. 31 of these will be made in memory of lost family members and donated to a local cancer center (mostly adults). Another 31 will be made in memory of a very special little girl who lost her battle in 2014 at the tender age of 3 AND in honor of the boys and girls currently fighting the battle at the children’s hospital that my grandson is often a patient of (non- cancer medical conditions). These hats will be donated to the cancer unit of the same hospital. The last 16 will be made in memory of my Grandma who we lost to lung cancer 16 years ago. Grandma is the one who fostered my love of crochet, taught me at the age of 4, and encouraged me from the age of 8 to ‘do my own thing and that it was ‘okay’ to put stitches together to create what I saw in my mind…..ultimately she is the one who gave me the knowledge and courage to take the leap and not only design for myself, put to publish my own designs. The hat pattern that I will be sharing on my ‘day’ was designed for a friend who was undergoing chemo at the time (I am happy to say that friend is currently in remission….praise the Lord) using a ‘stitch pattern’ that my Grandma encouraged me to ‘develop’ in the early years of my crochet journey!! I am super excited to not only be a part of this challenge but to also be a small fish in a big pond of some awesome designers!! I was honored and touched beyond words when asked to ‘participate’ in this awesome challenge by contributing a pattern. The 16 hats made in memory of my Grandma will be donated to a cancer center that ‘caters’ to the elderly and I along with my son and grandson will be personally delivering them to the recipients (along with care packages) on Dec. 15th! As of typing this comment, I am currently at a completed hat total towards my goal of 43, just need to finish a brim and weave ends on number 44!!

    1. SweetPotato3 Post author

      Betty, bless you! It sounds like you have been through a lot. I hope you find much healing as you work on these hats. I hope you find the patterns helpful and encouraging over the next month. ~Christine

  17. Dean Tate

    I’m joining for my mom (2006,brain), my dad (2013,bone), sister (skin), sister (2014, liver), brother in law (2013,liver), friend (2012,lung), husband (lung). Those without dates have beat the odds. Dates are year they passed.

  18. Danelle

    In honor of my mother who passed May 2015 from lung cancer. I have a local cancer center I plan on donating to. Thank you.

  19. Emma Poeling

    I have many in my list that I remember each time I make something for a a cancer patient. My Mom passed from brain cancer in 2004. My Dad is 82 & is still surviving prostate cancer since 2002. 2 Aunts with breast cancer (1 surviving, 1 deceased) A nephew deceased in 1996 from leukemia. He was 14. My husband has skin recurring skin cancer. His brother passed of lung cancer. Friends that have both lost the fight or survived leukemia, breast cancer, colon cancer, & prostate cancer. Cancer is a horrible disease that takes too many way before their time! Thanks for all you do! I commend you & each of the designers who take their own time & designs to commit to this challenge. Thank you all!

  20. Sharon Panepinto

    I will be making and donating as many hats as I can to Lakeridge Health Center in Oshawa Ontario in memory of my mother. That is where she had her chemo and radiation treatments throughout her battle with lung cancer. I spent many many days there with her throughout her almost 4 year fight. We lost her on November 30, 2014 and I miss her terribly.

  21. Teri

    You are a lovely soul… and you’re blessing thousands upon thousands of hurting people and even their family & friends who see your love and generosity. On behalh of the many, many family & friends I know who are or were or, sadly may be, fighting this dreadful disease m: May God bless you in a million ways.

    When I was reading this post (in the middle of last night) it made me think back over my life and the losses, and some saves, and some still battling family, friends, every age of life. I looked at your ribbon board and know at least one person (usually several more than that) who have or have had at least 20… TWENTY… of those different cancers. 💔. Thank you for such a lovely and easy way “to do SOMETHING” to give hope. Thank you.

  22. Virginia

    I like others have several people who I want to honor. A woman at our church had stage 4 cancer and right now is cancer free; my best friend in junior high/high school and still a close friend now, was diagnosed with breast cancer this summer and has gone through treatment; my sister-in-law was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and will be starting treatment soon; a close friend’s husband died from brain cancer and a friends daughter in her senior year of high school died of a rare kind of cancer, living only a little over a year after diagnosis. I am doing this in honor of the bravery in which all these listed have faced cancer or are facing cancer.

  23. Teresa Mooberry

    I am doing this in honor of my mother who had Non Hodgkins lymphoma.. , for my father who has bladder cancer.

  24. Steff

    I’ll be making some to donate to the Cross Cancer Center in Edmonton, Alberta, to pay back the amazing help treatment I received last year. I’ve been gone all weekend, first at a conference for hereditary cancers, like the breast cancer I was diagnosed with in July of last year. Doing it for the 10 family members I have lost already in England, and for everyone currently fighting this ridiculous disease <3

  25. Artria graves

    A friend of mine is fighting breast cancer right now. She has lost all of her hair and wears wigs. Even though she looks fabulous in the wigs I know she gets hit wearing them.

  26. Mkay

    I love that you do this <3 I have lost family members to cancer and I have some survivors in the family. Currently mother n law is chemo treatment for colon cancer and aunt dealing with breast cancer so this means a lot to me and I thank you !!!

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  28. Peggy

    I am sorry that I missed the first few days/hats. I made several hats from last year for a friend that was going through chemo. You do such a great job of coordinating and finding some great designs. Will be checking every day now to keep up 🙂

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  33. Kris Abdo

    I am making and donating hats in honor of my mother who is a 7 year breast cancer survivor, and in memory of my grandmother who lost her battle with breast cancer on December 10, 2015.

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  35. Ronetta Flowers

    Hi, I missed the beginning of this challenge, just saw it today. I am joining in honor of my Mother who passed in 1995 from uterine cancer.

  36. Lalitha Jairam

    I just saw this today. I want to do this in memory of my sister, who lost her battle last year. I used to knit and crochet chemo caps while I sat with her in her chemo sessions and her hospital stays, and I wish to continue doing so.

  37. Marcie Horton

    My husband has Stage 3 Prostate cancer metasized to lymphnodes. I a ms cared to death to lose him. I’m making caps for his local cancer center.

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  40. Lori

    Just ran across your challenge today. Love it! I’ll be making hats in honor of my grandma, who passed away in 1975, when most cancers were all still pretty much a death sentence. Also for my dad, who lost his battle with lung cancer in 1995. I think of him still so often. There are others, also, too many to mention, but thankfully many have beaten this awful disease. Thank you for doing this.

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  48. Joan

    Hi, I am a member and have been following your group prior to this Cancer Challenge. I had been getting all the emails until yesterday and then for some reason, I never got it. Could you Please help me with this, Thank You so much

    1. SweetPotato3 Post author

      Joan, that is odd. Please check your spam or trash folder. If you still don’t see then try to resign up and if it still isn’t working then please send me an email and we’ll figure something out.

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  55. Sarah Garratt

    I am making the hats and sending them to a local lady that lost her little girl (3yo) to cancer last year here in Wellinborough. U.K She is donating them to friends and families that are still going through what she went through.

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  62. Carmen N

    Sadly, I have too many people to choose from to honor. My grandmother died when my mother was 14. I’ve had friends and family survive breast cancer. More recently, I lost a sister-in-law to liver cancer.


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