Comfort Scarves – Southwestern Pennsylvania
July 2011 Newsletter
The Comfort Scarves web site www.comfortscarves.org is now up so please visit to read more about us and our shelters. However, keep in mind that Matt Joachim, our web site designer, and I are still 'tweaking' it. A link to our shelters' web sites is provided so you may learn more about them, their programs and needs.
July 1st Donations - 70 scarves
Total donations since October 2010 1060 handmade items
Donations this month kept that believe word right in front of me.
1. Box arrived filled with 27 lovely scarves from the Sit and Knit Group of CIGNA located on the Southside of Pittsburgh. The group includes Karen Bachman, Connie Wisegarver, Jessica Mignon, Deanna Boyden, Jessica Haggerty, Jane Kosco, Kimberly Lang, April Sue Marker, Vanessa Nye, Gladys Shelly and Michelle Tigner. Didn't even know they knew about us.
2. Another box arrived with 16 delightful scarves from Lisa Woodruff who chairs the Central Ohio Binky Patrol. Lisa has kindly posted Comfort Scarves information on their website www.centralohiobinkypatrol.weebly.com to inform her volunteers about domestic violence and the Comfort Scarves project. She is doing amazing work for children in foster care providing each one a 'Binky' – a handmade blanket. Visit her site for details.
3. A key part of my believe are the knit/crochet washcloths made by Tabitha Circle, Epworth United Methodist Church in Allison Park. The beautifully wrapped packages contain a washcloth plus personal care items and include a personal note from the giver. I've wondered if they were of value to our shelters and then received this email from Eileen Kennon, a key volunteer at the Washington County shelter of Domestic Violence Services of Southwestern PA: "Just wanted you to know how much the washcloths are appreciated. We tuck a package of a washcloth and toiletries in each woman's welcome basket. I know they are appreciated. Thank you so much." Thanks to the generosity of these women, I have 227 packets in pretty pink bins that will take care of the shelters' needs August, September and October. I will be able to avoid the costly mailing and personally deliver these items the end of the month with the August Scarves.
Individual donations have arrived from: Elisha Barmore, Mary Benson, Holly Anne Conti, Rene Butka, Shirley Kroupa, Emily Shipe, Joan Trimble and Barb Tyler.
Charities helping Comfort Scarves
• Recently the Ravelry Knit Black and Gold Group has again adopted Comfort Scarves with its own thread and posts encouraging others to give. So many new people have responded favorably to the project via this topic. Many thanks to Holly Anne Conti for suggesting this to our moderator.
• Again the Knit Black and Gold Group has come forward. This time with a KAL/CAL (Knit Along/Crochet Along) in the Knit/Crochet B n' G: What's on the needles topic. Beginning when training camp would've started, July 24th, a pattern will be posted each Sunday for either a square to make a Steeler Nation (or several) afghan or to make a Comfort Scarf each week. Elisha Barmore is our driving force behind this and will post the patterns. It is so easy to go to www.ravelry.com to join in.
Looking ahead: October Domestic Violence Awareness Month Project
Provide purple scarves (DVAM color) to all shelter residents. Every box that arrives continues to have a few purple scarves so our stash for October is growing. The Push for Purple is on with the deadline for me to have all the scarves September 15th so I have time to wrap and deliver them. You may send your scarves at anytime as I've storage space for them.
Looking ahead: Holiday Project
• I know, it's summer here in the 'Burgh and we are all seeking new 'cool down' methods. However, the holidays will be here before we blink. We will continue our Holiday Project to provide handmade items for each shelter resident: women, children, teens, men. Last year we had over 290 items donated. This year we've added two more shelters. They may be scarves, hats, gloves, shawls, cowls, shrugs, soft toys, fleece scarves, fleece blankets, etc. Whatever you wish to make and they may be sent to me at anytime as I've already a stash designated for the Holiday Project. Last year we donated 90 fleece scarves just for the children in our shelters. Fleece scarves and blankets should be colorful patterns, stripes, sports theme, etc appropriate for all ages of children and youth. Small fleece blankets are especially nice for the younger children as a 'comfort blanket'. The deadline for Holiday Project items is November 21, 2011.
Will continue to need ~80 scarves each month just for new women entering shelters. As donations increase new shelters will be added.
So much going has been going on these past few months (aren't May/June always like that) that there are emails, etc that I haven't responded to recently. My focus for Comfort Scarves has been the deliveries to and contact with our shelters – that is my first commitment and is current. Now things have settled a bit thus I will be able to be back in touch to pick up scarves, write emails, etc – thanks for understanding.
My thanks Each month I offer blessings for all of you who so generously support this project. When I begin to explain Comfort Scarves to someone there is always a sense of amazement on their part that so many women around this world do so much charity knitting and crocheting. As the story unfolds they soon begin to believe – I know I do. We are to be doing this.
Blessings and hugs