So what do you do with the hundreds of surplus hand-knit washcloths? A group of women from Penticton had just the ticket.
These ladies, all residents of the Hamlets of Penticton, have recently armed themselves with knitting needles and crochet hooks, and have begun to make blankets.
The beneficiary of their generosity is the charity Okanagan Moms for Moms, which supports mothers and caregivers in crisis who face a variety of poverty-related issues.
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“Women in need in the South Okanagan had a whole bunch of washcloths and they wanted to give them to us,” said Carolyn Denise, director of the Hamlets Recreation Centre.
“I thought we could bring them in and people could take them away, but these (resident) women had a different plan; sew them together.
“They wanted to make these wonderful blankets and give them back to the community for someone else to use. They just wanted to refund.
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Denise met someone from Mamas for Mamas by chance and it seemed like the perfect match.
“Homemade blankets are special because they come from the heart,” Denise said. “The ladies said if there were any young women who needed them, we would like them to have blankets.”
According to Melanie Velechenko, Mamas for Mamas resource coordinator in Penticton, the recipients of the blankets were especially happy.
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“They (recipients) are reminded that there are people in their community who care about them and their families,” Velechenko said. “Getting something handy when you may not have a special support package adds that touch of humanity and connection that we strive to provide our families in the South Okanagan.
Penticton Sr., 86, is writing a book about the difficulty of caring for a critically ill loved one.
“We tell families where the blankets are from and they love that they belong to a different generation of moms.”
Wilma Hornby was one of the volunteers who collected washcloths together, usually working with blankets while watching a baseball game on television.
“We’re in a safe place here, and a lot of the women who got the blankets aren’t,” Hornby said.
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Margaret Anderson also helped sew the pieces together.
“We just had a whole bunch of squares (material) lying around and it felt like something really important needed to be done with them,” she said.
“We didn’t know much about them (Mamas for Mamas) but when we found out about the band. It was just great that they were helping other people, so we wanted to help them.
Many of the same women have volunteered to help others in the community, including those evacuated from the recent Keremeos Creek wildfire.
“I’m so proud of these ladies who want to give back to the community,” Denise said. “It’s something they really do from the bottom of their hearts.”
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