Need Community Service Hours? We’ve got you covered!Susan Finch2023-12-27T17:59:03+00:00
Before you choose Binky Patrol for your community service, make sure the agency, school, etc., you have to report your hours to will accept us. If you have contacted a local chapter and they will not accept community service, please alert BP National Headquarters, and we will figure it out. email@example.com – founder . Also, we’ve been doing this for a while and have to get a bit firmer on a few things.
If this is to satisfy court-ordered community service hours, we now have more requirements, including a form of the required information. This is due to a few bad apples trying to turn in used blankets, items that didn’t fit our size requirements, and basically lying about what they did for the hours. We are also adding a new form for you to give us more details – your parole officer, etc. No hours will be given without this form being filled out. Once filled out, it will be sent to your PO for THEIR approval. You will be copied.
Read this through, then click on the form link – STUDENTS have one link and can skip a bunch of this.
Court-ordered hours – READ THROUGH THIS ALL THE WAY. Your link is also at the bottom of this page.
Everyone can follow the instructions below. Only court-ordered community service people must fill out the form, not students. The student form is here, and optional.
Let me start by saying how much we appreciate you have chosen to help us and the kids we serve by doing your community service hours through us. We know you are all trying to juggle jobs and kids AND get these hours done. We’ve made this as flexible as we can to allow people to do this remotely AND for the courts to trust you are actually doing the hours. That’s why we have so many pieces to it, so they will trust us, and our reputation remains strong to allow people to get their hours through us.
This article is lengthy because it’s evolved over several years and has to be standard for the entire country and all situations. I know it may seem a bit strict or harsh, but we are so focused on the kids we serve and our limited volunteer time we had to get picky. If you have any questions about anything, please email me directly.
Susan Finch, Founder
For your binkies to be accepted, you must:
FOR FLEECE BLANKETS: PLEASE CUT OFF THE SELVEDGE EDGES (those are the two sides with the curly fabric and writing) BEFORE YOU CUT THE FRINGE. Binkies with those edges in the fringe will not be accepted because they look TERRIBLE. Even poor people, and sick people like to receive beautiful items – not slapped together and rushed. Hours for binkies not completed will not count. Our priority is the child receiving the binky, not your community service hours.
TIE ALL FRINGES – go through them and double-check that all of the fringe has been tied. Some of you turn in over 100 binkies, and half are not all tied. It’s a lot of time for our chapter leaders to “proof” each binky. PLEASE have them all done. Hours for binkies not completed will not count.
If you are SEWING BINKIES:
TRIPLE CHECK FOR PINS! Open the quilt and lay it across a table, then run your hands over every inch, FRONT AND BACK, and check for pins. Too often pins are missed and actually sewn INSIDE with the batting or left holding the front, batting and backing together! One missed pin can cause irreparable harm to babies, children and the Binky Patrol reputation.
HAVE CLEAN-SMELLING BINKIES. THEY CAN NOT SMELL LIKE SMOKE or be COVERED IN PET HAIR. We will NOT wash binkies to get the smell out. For FLEECE blankets, you need to check with the facility you are donating to. For SEWN, KNITTED OR CROCHETED NEVER WASH.
If you must wash a fleece blanket, please wash the blankets before donating them with UNSCENTED detergent and please do NOT USE dryer sheets of any type. People are often allergic to scented items and the blankets will be rejected by shelters and hospitals if they have a strong scent. If you are around smokers. One community service person swore that it was her neighbors that smoked not her, I gagged as I brought them out of the bag. She assured me she only vaped. It cost us $80 and 4 hours of time to wash them twice in industrial machines and dry them. We will not count smokey binkies nor wash binkies with pet hair. It’s too costly and time-consuming.
From one of our Area Coordinators – a gentle reminder – Make sure any words in the pattern are going the right direction BEFORE you cut and tie
WE DO NOT ACCEPT LAST-MINUTE VERIFICATIONS. This is because we are 100% volunteer and don’t always check emails immediately, nor can we get your forms filled out. Give us a few days or a week’s notice, please. We want you to make your deadlines.
WE DO NOT ACCEPT USED BINKIES – YOU MUST MAKE THEM, NOT YOUR GRANDMA. AND PLEASE DO NOT donate blankets from your closet that you no longer use, even if they were handmade. Blankets with holes showing signs of wear or pilling will not be accepted. This is about community service HOURS. Time YOU spend for whatever the courts didn’t like that you did.
We are a 501c3. We can give you that documentation for them. Because we don’t have local offices, other than our local chapters, some won’t accept something as simple as allowing you to comfort children through virtual volunteering or making blankets at your home. Go figure. If you are able to submit hours from Binky Patrol, please follow the instructions below:
Use our drop-down menu at the top to find a chapter near you.
Contact that chapter leader directly and ask them how you can help. Many no longer accept court-ordered blankets because of how many people tried to cheat the system.
If you can’t find a chapter near you, contact BPHQ: firstname.lastname@example.org about volunteering. Do not choose Dallas, or Portland (Beaverton is OK) chapters. That runs through National HQ only.
Make blankets, help on our website, host an event – it all counts for HOURS, but we need to verify whatever you choose. It would be good to ask your Binky Patrol contact. Tell us what you are ABLE to do, willing to do and the hours you need by when.
When you are done, your Binky Patrol contact will verify the hours you spent. We do this a variety of ways. When there is no chapter near you or that chapter is not participating in this program, this is what we do:
After you have verified you can choose Binky Patrol – check with your parole officer, court, etc. – email Founder Susan Finch to ask for a pdf of the delivery receipt. (email@example.com)
IF YOU ARE MAKING BLANKETS, YOU buy the fabric to make the NEW blankets. Make sure they follow the criteria for the hours that you need.
You find the place to deliver them to locally a clinic, shelter, etc. that serves people directly – not another non-profit like us – you have to get them to the agency that needs them. This saves shipping money for no reason and gets you involved in your local community. This is TIME too. Research and delivery can take a bit of time.
Contact them to arrange a delivery time and ensure they accept them.
Email Susan Finch to get the receipt to print for them to sign.
You’ll need to get a photo of you there with them delivering the blankets.
You’ll need them to sign the receipt we emailed to you.
You’ll need their business card so we can call to verify – this is because we don’t know you and we are not there and people have been less than honorable in the past so we make this procedure.
Email Susan Finch (firstname.lastname@example.org) the photo of you with them, the business card and of the receipt so they can all be read, along with your address for the letter.
She will email you back a signed letter on Binky Patrol letterhead verifying your hours.
If you are wanting to do something other than making blankets, it’s trickier, but we can figure it out. Again, contact Susan Finch, our founder.
Fleece blankets take less time than sewn, quilted, or crocheted. We have hours set for each type of blanket.
Basic strip, sewn med-large blanket (4’x4′, 4’x6′) with batting and backing – simple in a quilter’s eye: 3 hrs each. If you get fancy, let us know – we will work with you. SAMPLE HERE
No-Sew Fleece – large (4′ x 5′ – 6′): 1 hr each blanket – I’ve been testing and they don’t take long to cut or tie. 8-year-olds can get them done in under an hour. INSTRUCTIONS HERE
Crocheted – small, 3 x 3 simple pattern: 5 hrs each blanket – depends on pattern.
Knitted – 3×3.5 small/med, simple – 6 hours each blanket – depends on pattern.
Send/give your verification form to the Binky Patrol contact to fill out on your behalf. If mailing, send with a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) to speed up the process. Remember, we can do a lot of this via email. We will call the agency to verify you did do this. Remember, we don’t know you, you are remote. This is a lot of trust to help you get these hours. Don’t try to be a weasel. We don’t like weasels.
If you PURCHASED materials for this project, mail in your ORIGINAL receipts (no copies accepted) stapled to a quick note explaining what they are and your address, etc. so we can issue you a tax receipt for your donation. Postage counts, too. Mail it to National Headquarters and they will mail you back a receipt. Include a SASE. Our address is: Binky Patrol, PO Box 652, Beaverton, OR 97075-0652. On the outside write in the lower left corner: COMMUNITY SERVICE.
If you are giving to us directly – by dropping off to a local chapter, we receive the blankets, forms, etc. and sign your receipt and form.
YOU have MADE A DIFFERENCE in the life of a CHILD or TEEN who needed comfort – YOU DID IT!
Want to keep doing it? We’ve LOVE IT!
WE WILL NOT COUNT OR ACCEPT ANY BLANKETS THAT SMELL OF SMOKE OR ARE COVERED IN PET HAIR. NO EXCEPTIONS. DO NOT TRY TO HIDE WITH PERFUME OR FABREEZE – IT DOESN’T WORK FOR KIDS WITH RESPIRATORY PROBLEMS. WE WILL NOT ACCEPT USED BLANKETS OF ANY TYPE.
PLEASE KEEP IN MIND:
TIME is NOT tax-deductible – EVER. Only the materials you use to create the blankets you donate if you have the ORIGINAL RECEIPT. You can count the miles you drove to shop for the materials and deliver the blankets. That’s all. Charity miles are less than business miles. If you donate blankets, we have set values for various types and sizes.
CHECK WHERE YOU ARE DONATING. SOME PLACES REQUIRE BLANKETS ARE WASHED. WE PREFER THEY ARE NOT WASHED. IT WILL DEPEND ON WHERE YOU ARE DELIVERING. QUILTED, CROCHETED, KNITTED – NEVER WASHED. FLEECE NO SEW TIED – it varies – they need to be brand new fabric made during this community service assignment. We have to say this because recently, someone bought really old blankets from Goodwill and tried to pass them off as freshly made. They were worn, pilled and dingy. Not ideal for a binky for a child in need of a reminder that they are special, loved, and matter.
ALSO – ALL expenses related to this, including postage are 100% your responsibility – there are no funds, no up-front coverage of ANYTHING by our chapters. We were bitten once and will not be bitten again by a dishonest volunteer eeking out her parole hours.
ALSO, if you are doing community service hours due to crimes against children, minors, women, we ask that you find another organization. We feel deeply that the hearts of our volunteers go into the blankets as they make them and we want to help these children and women heal. We will ask for verification from your parole officer to ensure that you meet this requirement.