Volunteering to change the world

Volunteering From Home: DIY Crochet Nests for Baby Birds & Injured Wildlife, Students Earn Community Service Hours

We’re all familiar with the concept of working from home, but have you thought about the benefits of volunteering from home?  There are plenty of reasons why volunteering can sometimes be difficult despite your best intentions.  Life is busy.  You’re working long hours.  You don’t have easy access to volunteer activities in your community.  We get it, which is why we created this blog, Make a Difference From Home.  Volunteering from home is super fun and  a great way to gather family and friends together to make the world a better place.

Would you like to help orphaned baby birds and other wildlife? Do you know how to crochet or would you like to learn?  Then this is the perfect do-it-yourself volunteer project for you! You can crochet nests for baby birds and injured wildlife from the comfort of your own home. When  baby birds and other wildlife are brought into rescues, they need to be kept warm in a soft place, preferably in something that resembles their nests in the wild.  These DIY crocheted nests are quick to make and will help orphaned and injured animals recover.  It’s true, your crocheted nests will be warm and cozy, but did you know that a secure nest also helps ensure that the baby’s legs grow properly?  

Volunteer from the comfort of your own home and make a big difference by crocheting nests…  and have FUN!  Every crocheted nest helps save a life.



Knitting nests for orphaned wildlife is an act of compassion and care that provides numerous benefits to the animals in need. Here are some reasons why knitting nests can be helpful:

  1. Warmth and Comfort: Knitted nests offer a cozy and warm environment for orphaned wildlife. These nests mimic the natural nests or burrows that young animals would typically have with their mothers. The soft and insulating materials used in knitting provide a comfortable space for the animals to rest and sleep, helping to regulate their body temperature and promote overall well-being.

  2. Protection and Security: Nests knitted for orphaned wildlife provide a sense of security and protection. Young animals, especially those who have lost their parents or been separated from their natural habitats, may feel vulnerable and stressed. The nests act as a safe retreat, reducing stress levels and providing a familiar and secure space where the animals can feel at ease.

  3. Facilitate Rehabilitation: Many wildlife rehabilitation centers or organizations use knitted nests as part of their efforts to care for orphaned or injured animals. These nests can be used for various purposes, such as providing a temporary home during the rehabilitation process or serving as a comfortable container for transportation. The familiarity of a knitted nest can help reduce the stress on the animals and aid in their recovery and successful reintegration into the wild.



  • Washable yarn in any weight (the yarn MUST be washable please)
  • Hook slightly smaller than the yarn calls for
  • Yarn needle
  • Scissors
  • Pattern



Do you want to support charity in another way too please?  You can purchase our adorable shop-for-a-cause Volunteer Kit and get all your supplies for this project from our Etsy store, Kindness Market here.




  • Acrylic or cotton yarn works best and is inexpensive.
  • The yarn MUST be washable please.
  • To prevent tiny legs and feet from getting caught in the nest, avoid using fuzzy yarn.
  • Please be sure that the nest is knitted tightly.  Using two or three strands of yarn knitted together will help the nest maintain its form and ensure a tight knit.
  • Earth-tone colored yarn to resemble the color of natural nests is preferred but any color works.
  • There is a need for all sizes of nests.  Cast on more stitches for larger nests and fewer stitches for smaller nests.
  • Recommended: two strands of worsted weight yarn and a US K hook to fit a standard soda can


Make a Difference From Home



These nests are easy to make and all sizes of nests are needed.  There are plenty of nest crochet patterns online.  Choose one that works best for you or you can follow our pattern instructions below.  The key is to make the stitches as tight as possible so that the claws and nails of the babies don’t get caught in the finished nest.

  1. Chain 3 and slip stitch into the furthest chain from hook to form a ring.
  2. Single crochet (sc) 6 stitches inside ring
  3. Sc 2 stitches in each stitch around (12)
  4. Sc 1, Sc 2 stitches in next, repeat around (18)
  5. Sc 2, Sc 2 stitches in next, repeat around (24)
  6. Sc 3, Sc 2 stitches in next, repeat around (30)
  7. Sc all stitches for 5 rounds and bind off
  8. Weave in the ends and fold down top



Are you a student looking for a project that allows you to earn community service hours while volunteering from home?  Look no further!  Make a Difference From Home, presented by Small Acts Big Change, will happily certify your volunteer hours for school, youth organizations, and more!  

Every handmade nest measuring in diameter 5 inches or larger earns two (2) hours of volunteer service credit hours with Small Acts Big Change.  The nests must be sent to us at Small acts Big Change, PO Box 1474, La Canada, CA 91012 so that we can verify your volunteer work.  Any questions?  Please email us at [email protected].



Contact your local wildlife rescue organizations to see if they have a need for your nests.  You can also mail your nests to the following nonprofit organizations who need nests immediately:

In the United States:

  • Carolina Waterfowl Rescue Group, PO Box 1484, Indian Trail, NC 28079
  • Small Acts Big Change, PO Box 1374, La Canada, CA 91012
  • Wild Wishlist, PO Box 1211, Skylar, NC 28776

In Australia:

  • Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, c/o Lee Pirini, Locked Bag 3000, Archerfield BH 4108, Queensland Australia  



We’d love to see a  picture of your “Crochet for a Cause” scarf .  Please feel free to share pictures at https://www.facebook.com/smallactsbigchangeus.



If you would like to learn about more DIY volunteer from home projects like these, please subscribe to this page, Make a Difference From Home.  

This blog is hosted by Small Acts Big Change, a nonprofit organization helping people volunteer to change the world through kindness and service. 



Would you like to bring this project or another from Make a Difference From Home to a group you are involved with while still practicing social distancing? Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, schools, businesses or other groups, please contact Carolyn  at [email protected] for more information.



Thank you for making a difference from home! <3 


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Small Acts Big Change presents Make a Difference From Home. This blog is filled with fun DIY do-good projects to help people of all ages volunteer from the comfort of their own homes. Students can earn service hours on many of our projects. Thanks for making a difference!