The inspiration for today’s post came from the most unexpected of places . . . my son!
We’d been invited over last night for dinner and to spend sometime with that adorable new granddaughter of ours. (I swear my heart grows a size or two every time I see her!) As we were eating dinner my son turned me and said. “So Mom, are you doing Quilts for Syria next?” I have to say that one caught me right off guard!
As I began to process the question I was aware of two things. The first, was that my mind hadn’t considered gathering quilts like I did for the survivors of Japan’s earthquake and tsunami (“Quilts for Japan” ) or the year I gathered quilts for those that lost everything when the Bow River spilled it banks and Calgary flooded. (“Quilting for Calgary” ) I felt sick inside, downright embarrassed. Why hadn’t I thought of it?
The second thing that hit me was that my son’s mind DID go there! I felt a huge wave of pride come over me. I seriously have two of the most incredibly giving and compassionate children (OK they’re not close to being children anymore but you know what I mean) that constantly amaze me.
So the conversation was started . . . the idea had been planted. I knew that logistically it wasn’t possible to start another quilt initiative for my new Syrian neighbors as they would be arriving imminently and quilts aren’t something that generally come together super fast. But then my head to went to a different place . . . the place of knitting and crocheting.
Winters can be harsh, what nicer way could there be than to welcome our new neighbors with a gift from the heart? A new pair of warm woolen mitts, a scarf or a toque lovingly stitched. We would literally be giving our new friends a warm welcome!
Needless to say my day has been spent researching what efforts if any, were already in place. (no need to re-invent the wheel as they say)
I was so happy to find a few groups already underway to help make the transition for these people to their new homes a little easier.
There’s a group in Quebec stitching toques (sorry my French isn’t the best so I can’t make out all of the details ) that’s called 2500 Tuques. You can learn more about the group here (google will translate much of the post)
The group is based out of Toronto and they’re trying to set up a network of Co-ordinators across Canada to gather and organize donations . . . Enter yours truly with the aide of a near and dear friend Chantel Pompa. (So grateful Chantel to have you onboard!)
I’ve found the challenge in organizing these kinds of things is always communication and time constraints. Understandably, the people dealing with the logistics of settling thousands into their new homes are drowning in a sea of logistics of their own so reaching them can be at best . . . trying.
I don’t have all my t’s crossed or I’s dotted just yet but I do have some things in place and the ball (yarn did you say?) *chuckle* is rolling.
Calgary’s 1300 Stitches for Syria is officially underway with details to follow. What’s that? . . . tomorrow’s blog post topic can be scratched off my to do list? YAHOO!
All jokes aside I’m so very proud of my country and fellow Calgarians that are stepping up to help welcome these people to their new lives and homes.
Be sure to drop by tomorrow if interested in seeing how you can help. Trust me when I say . . there’s a way for EVERYONE to help! Just think . . the more people that help spread word of the project, the more hands and hearts we warm!