Squares of Care


Comfort and warmth

Squares of Care Program

Barb Hartnett – Volunteers making a difference

Thanks to the warmth and compassion shown by the late volunteer Barb Hartnett and her wonderful way of giving back hope to those who most needed it. It is because of Barb that this Squares of Care program exists today.

And many thanks go out to all of the volunteers who continue to make this program a success.

These cozy and colourful creations are distributed widely to adult and paediatric cancer patients. Contact the Wellwood Resource Centre to find out how you can select one of these cozy creations for yourself or for someone else.

Details to get started to contribute squares:

Yarn type:

Knitters are asked to use a 4-ply, worsted-weight acrylic yarn. Please no wool (no reactions that way).

Yarn colour:

All colours and designs  are welcome, as long as the size is right.


Squares should be 6 1/2″ or 17 cm, although the group can work with a variety of sizes.


It is suggested that knitters use a #7  U.S./U.K. (4.5 mm) needle. Check your gauge and adjust as necessary to obtain a square of 6 1/2″.

If crocheting, work with the hook best suited to your yarn and gauge to make it a 6 1/2″ square.

Cast on:

Cast on 33 stitches.


Generally, 35 squares are used for a blanket. Each square is edged with a simple single-crochet border in a complimentary colour, then that same colour is used to crochet the squares into rows (see assembly).


Please work the ends of the yarn into the squares. Weaving your own ends in keeps our volunteers free to assemble the squares together.

Finished size:

The finished afghan is approximately 53″ x 38″. It may be slightly larger with the joining and borders.


We have volunteers who will wash the finished afghans in an unscented, gentle soap and then package them before being distributed to our recipients.

Download our handy Squares of Care reference card

Other ways you can help

​Some aspects of our Squares of Care program have recently changed. The pause in the program due to the pandemic has created a backlog.

As we work through the process of getting caught up, we’re asking those who are donating squares whether they can help in other ways, too. Take a look to see what else you can do as we move forward through this period of catch-up.

Assembling your own squares

Are you able to also assemble your squares into a full afghan? If so, please see our guidelines here.

Assembling pre-made squares

Are you able to accept pre-made squares from us to assemble into full afghans? If so, please see our guidelines here.

Knitting or crocheting a throw?

If you would prefer to knit or crochet a single-piece afghan rather than a granny square afghan, please see our guidelines here.

Where To Bring Your Donations

25,050+ afghans donated

Where to drop off squares, yarn, and afghans

You can leave your donations of squares, yarn, or afghans at the Wellwood Juravinski House (Community site). Please contact them first to make arrangements.

They may also be left with the information desk at the Juravinski Hospital (formerly the Henderson) or  the Juravinski Cancer Clinic.

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These past few years we have had to continually adjust as protocols changed. We are still moving through a period of adjustments, so subscribing is the best way to know where we’re at. Thanks!