January 2, 2009
Knit 2, Purl 2 Mitzvahs …
Several years ago we learned about a Denver lawyer who loved to knit. Since she was home raising a young family she had even more time to indulge in her passion. When a friend adopted a child from an orphanage in the FSU and reported on the very sad conditions in which these children live, Kimberly Turnbow found a way to use her talents on behalf of others-she created Warm Woolies. Warm Woolies provides hand-knitted wool garments for children in these orphanages as well as children growing up in a few Native American communities not far from Denver. All are created by volunteers across the country who knit with skill and not a small amount of love.
Kimberly’s efforts have proven extraordinarily successful. If you visit the group’s website, http://www.warmwoolies.org/, you will see just how this small and very focused group has grown. With over 500 items knitted in their first year of operation, it looks as if Warm Woolies ended 2008 with more than 12,000 items-socks, gloves, sweaters, vests-knitted by over 1000 volunteers. This figure means that every week Warm Woolies receives about 70 packages from knitters all over the world and distributes 1000 items each month to children in cold climates who can benefit from the warmth of these beautifully crafted garments.
When we contacted Kimberly to see where we could help her work it did not take long for her to come up with just the right need for us to fill. As is the case with nearly every program we work with, monetary donations to Warm Woolies have dropped by about 40% in the past year and with that, transportation costs have risen with the increase in fuel prices in the earlier part of the year. Kimberly asked if we could help them by providing funds for the ever-important boxes they need to ship the items either nationally or internationally. The Good People Fund has agreed to underwrite part of the costs of the more than 300 cardboard boxes they use each year.
It is a pleasure to be part of Warm Woolies – they are a small but very meaningful organization that not only provides items of warmth to youngsters who would otherwise go without, but they also allow volunteers to use their own special talents on behalf of others. If you are a knitter or know someone who is, check them out!