I am a local woman who has raised $600 for Haiti relief along with the students of the Camden-Rockport Middle School. My fundraiser is ongoing and I would love to get the word out further.

My name is Carrie Hedstrom. I am a 32-year-old stay-at-home mom. I live in Camden with my husband, Tom, and my children, Connor, 9, Brady, 8, Cam, 6, Theodore, 4, and Pearl, 1. I am also an art quilter and have my work displayed locally. In my “spare time,” I like to come up with creative projects. My most recent project this year is making shirts. It started out as shirts for my exercise classes (they say things like “strong is beautiful”). I use several techniques including bleaching, dyeing, painting, stencil and appliqué.

I was so struck by the disaster in Haiti. As a mom, I cannot imagine not only the horror of having my home destroyed but the aftermath. I can think of little else worse than not being able to feed my starving children or the idea that they may be orphaned and left destitute and without hope. I was moved to design a “Hope for Haiti” shirt.

I originally started out making them for young girls, but the response was so great that I now make shirts for all sizes — men, women, boys and girls. I handcraft each shirt individually. I have a workspace set up in my garage on my husband’s workbench. As I create each shirt, I try to think of the victims of this disaster and pray for them. I even get my children involved. They help me trace and cut out the little yellow suns on the front. My idea and hope with making shirts was, as the media coverage dies down over the next months, maybe when this shirt is worn it will be a reminder that there are people over there who continue to need our help and our prayers, and hope. Maybe wearing the shirt will simply remind its wearer to send out a positive thought in their direction.

Many people ask me where I find time to do this. It feels to me like God has granted me an extra hour a day just for T-shirts! On Jan. 25, I teamed up with Camden-Rockport Middle School and began selling these shirts out of the school office. In the first week we made $450, which was more than enough to sponsor a child in Haiti through World Vision (worldvision.org). With the help of the staff, faculty, students and parents we were able to sponsor Williamson, who turned 7 on Feb. 1, for an entire year. We are now up to $600! I have put up a display outside the nurses’ office at Camden Hills Regional High School and hopefully will get the shirts into RES next. Shirts are $20 each; $15 of every sale goes to Williamson and the people of his village. I have boys and girls sizes small (6-8), medium (10-12) and large (12-14); men’s small, medium and large; women’s small, medium and large; and women’s fitted style in small and medium only.

Anyone wishing to purchase a shirt can contact me at hopeforhaitishirts@live.com. Please include name, address, size/style and quantity of shirts. I am willing to send shirts by mail with a shipping and handling fee. The address is Carrie Hedstrom, 7 Mount Battie St., Camden, ME 04843; phone: 236-2267 (home) and 593-2051 (cell); e-mail: hopeforhaitishirts@live.com.