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Spreading the message of love and care

The group that takes the concept of recycling one step beyond most others had a raffle last weekend at St.

The group that takes the concept of recycling one step beyond most others had a raffle last weekend at St. Albert Place and while the turnout could have been better, its members aren’t deterred from continuing to spread the message, one blanket at a time.

Hugs’n’Stitches, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping others cope with trauma or ill health through the healing powers of a handmade blanket, had an extra large double bed sized quilt piece up for grabs and, despite the minimal publicity, one organizer called the event a success.

“It wasn’t too bad,” explained Donna Johnson. “I think it was kind of a downturn about the weather. That was a bit of a bummer but we sold quite a few tickets. We weren’t out to make a lot of money. It’ll help offset some of our costs.”

While they only sold about a quarter of the tickets that they were hoping for, the group still called it a success since they don’t normally accept donations. They do, however, accept unwanted 100 per cent cotton fabric, batting and flannelette, the basic materials of their trade.

“The majority of our fabric is donated,” she said, thanking Quiltessential and various members of the community for their help.

Since 2004 the group’s members have made more than 500 quilts with only a handful of active members. Each piece takes an average of six to 10 hours but if a member chooses to do a special or more complex project, it can take up to 30 hours. The finished products mostly go to children in need or seniors. Johnson said that you don’t have to look far to find someone who could really use the comfort of a blanket.

“There’s a lot of people out there that are in desperate need and they’re right here in St. Albert. We’ve come to realize there’s a huge need, people in dire straits.”

That’s why their donations mostly stay in town, except for the occasional donations to orphanages overseas. “It’s very rewarding to be able to give back to your community in this way. This is something that we all love to do. It’s very heart warming.”

For more information about the group or to inquire about donating fabric, call Johnson at 780-458-4772.

Scott Hayes

About the Author: Scott Hayes

Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.
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