Handcrafted And Totally Special

What is H.A.T.S.?

H.A.T.S., which has expanded beyond just hats, is an important part of our community outreach and education work. It is a wonderful combination of generous community members who donate yarn; talented women at the North Carolina Correctional Institution for Women (NCCIW) who make hats and other items; and curious shoppers who make donations in exchange for these handcrafted items.

The program started years ago by the incarcerated women at NCCIW who began making hats for their children from whom they were separated. Over the past few years Our Children’s Place has created a partnership with Mothers And Their Children (MATCH).

Our Children’s Place displays these hats and other handcrafted items made by these women at alternative markets and fairs throughout the Triangle and beyond. People who attend these events can make a donation in exchange for a hat, and in doing so, walk away with a tangible reminder of the children on whom Our Children’s Place and MATCH are focused.

For the women at NCCIW who are involved, H.A.T.S. provides an opportunity (for many, the first) to give back to the community, a gesture that will hopefully continue upon their release.

Donations received are used to support the awareness and outreach activities of Our Children’s Place and help with the transportation needs of the children involved in MATCH.

H.A.T.S. History

More than 10 years ago, women at NCCIW began making hats for their children from whom they were separated. In 2003, a local artist created a display of these hats, hanging them from the ceiling with crocheted lines. Her hope was to have 1,200 hats on display – one to represent each of the women in prison in North Carolina at the time.

About that same time, Mary Stowe from Yarns, Etc... became involved. What started out as Mary simply providing NCCIW with yarn donated by Yarns, Etc... customers and other community members grew into a partnership with Our Children’s Place.

A few years ago we began partnering with Mothers and Their Children (MATCH) to expand H.A.T.S. MATCH is a special family resources center within NCCIW. One of the MATCH programs brings children of incarcerated women to NCCIW to visit with their mothers. Inside the prison, MATCH runs an enhanced visitation center strictly for the mothers and their children to share.

Help H.A.T.S.

To date, the H.A.T.S. program has helped raise over $25,000 but we need your help!

Say Hi and Buy

Attend one of the markets we participate in, stop by to say “Hi!”, select one or more wonderful hats, and give them a good home.

Give Us Space

Invite us to your marketplace or event.  We won't take up a lot of room.  We promise!

Donate Yarn

We’ll take partial and full skeins, all colors, weights, textures, etc. We have two drop-off locations:

Yarns, Etc...

(919) 928-8810
1322 Fordham Blvd., Ste 4
Chapel Hill, NC


Tues-Fri, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Sat, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Great Yarns

(919) 832-3599
1208 Ridge Rd
Raleigh, NC


Mon-Fri, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00p.m.
Sat, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Please contact us if you would like to work out other drop-off arrangements.

Spread the Word

Download our flyer below and give it to family, friends, and organizations that might be interested!