The Dove Fund

The DOVE Fund and their Bandage Brigade

The-Dove-FundOn January 12, 2000 a group of Vietnam Veterans started The Dove Fund .  In its short history it has built 44 schools, 11 daycare centers, 3 medical clinics, and 5 mayor water projects among many other ongoing projects.

I have been moved by one particular service that is provided by these dear folks and their volunteers. They provide bandages to the lepers of Vietnam. Since 2008 their Bandage Brigade has delivered over 12,000 bandages. These are handmade by volunteers from around the globe.

I was amazed that in this century there were still people suffering from this horrific disease. I wanted to help and ask others to do the same.

All Images Credit: [ The Dove Fund ]

Why Handmade Leprosy Bandages

Leprosy-BandagesAccording to the folks on the ground in the colony for The Dove Fund, the handmade bandages breath better, can be washed, sterilized and reused. The bandages are not only used for sores but also for stumps. Gauze would wear out to quickly.

One more very important factor about making these bandages, the recipients know that it takes a lot of time to make one and so they feel that someone cares. A message rarely given to them.

 How to Make the Leprosy Bandages

Leprosy Bandages

Currently there are  patterns online for knitting and crocheting the bandages.

I have spent several days now trying to figure out a why to loom knit them to no avail. I have bought different looms and even contacted a loom maker to see he they could help. Some suggestions have been made. I will update this post once I get the information necessary to generate a pattern and/or  a video. God willing this will be shortly.

In the mean time I wanted to share this need with everyone willing to listen because some of us know how to knit or crochet and the need is here and now.

They do have some specific requirements for the bandages. I have listed these below.


Supplies Needed:

Leprosy BandageThreadThe Exact Yarn (Thread) in Specific Colors:

There are specifications for the materials used to make the bandages to avoid irritation.  Remember that open wounds are being covered. They ask that the thread be  No. 10 knit Cro-sheen, 100% mercerized cotton or polyester in white, cream or ecru.  No dyes please.

Suggested Brands are:  South Maid D54, DMC Traditions, Aunt Lydia’s Classic Crochet Thread, Cro Sheen and JP Coats

This yarn is sometimes called the “bedspread cotton”


 The Needles: For Now- Crochet and Knitting

Knitting Needlescrochet needles Use size 2 (2.75 mm = UK 12) knitting needles if you knit loosely
Use size 3 (3.25 mm = UK 10) needles if you knit tightly.

Use size D (3.00 mm = UK 11)
Use size E (3.50 mm = UK 9) crochet hook (loose tension desirable)


Knit Pattern:

Cast on 24 to 28 stitches so the bandage measures about 4″ across.
Knit every row until bandage is desired length of 48 inches long, and then bind off.
PLEASE DON’T FORGET: Secure thread end by slipping thread through last stitch, tying a double knot, and weaving end back through stitches. A sewing needle works well to do this.

Crochet Pattern:

Chain enough stitches to measure about 4″ in width.
Row 1: Single crochet into each chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Row 2: Single crochet into each sc across row. Ch 1 and turn. Continue to single crochet to end, chain 1 and turn. Repeat row 2 until bandage measures 48 inches long

PLEASE DON’T FORGET: Secure thread end by slipping thread through last stitch, tying a double knot, and weaving end back through stitches. A sewing needle works well to do this

Loom Knit Pattern:

Not yet available : But if you know how, please email me

To Complete the Project: 

AFTER you have woven the ends back into the stitches, wash the bandages, roll them and secure with a large safety pin.  Put in plastic bag (several to a bag), remove air, and seal.

Send Your Bandages to:
Linda Stocker
The Dove Fund Bandage Brigade
171 Mulkey Lane, Arial, WA 98603


or in Ohio

Roland Southard
115 East Back Bay Road
Bowling Green, OH 43402

 From the Bandage Brigade Blog

Perhaps Therese of Estero, Fla., said it best when she wrote, “It’s a blessing to be able to help God’s special children in this way. We can’t heal their wounds but we can dress them with our love and concern. When I crochet these bandages I feel like I have mean­ing to my life again. I pray for each person that is given one of my bandages.”


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Comments: 4

  1. Susan Craig June 14, 2014 at 2:40 pm Reply

    Thank you for giving people the chance to do something for others via some cherished handcrafts.

    • Denise Canela June 15, 2014 at 12:46 pm Reply

      Happy to do it. The Dove Fund is AWESOME

  2. Joan Hess November 7, 2013 at 3:57 pm Reply

    I am newly retired and love to crochet and knit and found that I now have the time. Would like to do both for a worthy cause. Are you still sending bandages for leprosy? I would be so very happy to add to the cause. I would appreciate any information you can give me.

    • Denise Canela November 12, 2013 at 11:23 pm Reply

      Sorry for the delay in responding Joan.. YES – they’re still collecting bandages. Here is the information
      The D.O.V.E. Fund Bandage Brigade
      Roland Southard
      115 East Back Bay Road
      Bowling Green, OH 4340

      If you wish to contact Roland you may do so at or (419)823-6897

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