Much of our knitting goes to the International Aid Trust who have a warehouse in Great Yarmouth. They help the needy in Eastern Europe and Asia by running and supporting orphanages and families. Our knitting helps provide vital clothing, blankets and toys for them. We are delighted to be able to support such a worthwhile charity and know that our work is going to help people who really need it. In one month we gave them 52 sacks of knitting! For more information go to www.internationlaidtrust.org.uk .
We store sacks of knitting at our Wool Loft in the Christ Church Centre before they are picked up by Alison and Barry Creak who together with Les and Joan Potter of the Upper Room Christian Fellowship in Great Yarmouth work tirelessly for the Interational Aid Trust. They frequently send us letters of thanks together with any wool they are able to collect. Recently they have sent a generous donation of £100 from their church to help provide wool for our knitters.
Samaritans Purse Shoebox appeal
For several years we have knitted for the local Samaritan's Purse Shoebox appeal. Last year they sent 13,750 boxes out to Serbia from the NR area. We help by knitting hats, glove, scarves and hand puppets for the boxes. We give them many sacks of knitted items which can be added to different boxes to make sure every child has warm things to wear. You can find out more about this project at www.operationchristmaschild.org.uk .
We have recently developed links with the local Red Cross organisation. Our Big Knit In produced hundreds of squares which will all be made into blankets for refugees. There is an endless need for clothes and blankets for them. We also crochet the Red Cross log - the Humanity Rose - and these are sold as brooches to raise money for the organisation.
Teddies for Vaccinations
Some of our knitted teddies travelled out to Nairobi in the suitcases of the grandaughter of one of our members and her friends. Children in the Nairobi slums were given them. The teacher who went with them said: 'The children were being vaccinated and were reluctant to come forward until the word got around that there was a free teddy if you had a jab. We were nearly killed in the rush! We took out 95 this time and they were really appreciated.' Teddies go to many of our different charities. Some of them are currently travelling in police cars in the Hunstanton area to give comfort to children who might be caught up in distressing situations.
Premature Baby Unit
We have knitted for the Norfolk and Norwich Premature Baby Unit for a long time and recently had a request for very, very tiny hats (egg cup size). They now save such tiny babies it is hard to get things small enough for them. We have a lovely pattern of a tiny baby hat with a flap - just see our patterns section.
The Rosie Maternity Unit. The Rosie is a level 3 maternity provider - essentially they can provide everything that Great ORmond St do, so with 6000 births last year at least 10% of those will need special care. The girls on the Reception Desk also run a permanent stall of baby clothes, the proceeds of which go to the unit. We provide them with prem baby clothes, snuggle triangles and knitted breasts to help mothers learn to breast feed. Patterns for these are in the patterns section.
The Haven Project
This organisation provides safe, supported housing for women and children fleeing domestic abuse. The Haven Project Sometimes mothers with children flee the family home virtually empty handed, the children with nothing more than one small bag. The Haven Project gives children a safe place to lay their heads and tries to provide every child with a knitted toy and their own personal blanket. The children are encouraged to keep these things, giving them continuity through very unsettling times. We can help by donating knitted toys and knitted or crocheted single blankets. If you'd like your blanket or toy to go to them just mark the bag "The Haven Project" and we'll make sure it gets there. We also support Leeway which has similar homes in Norfolk.
There are several Christmas tree festivals throughout the county. If there is one near you contact us for support to display a tree.
We support several local charities who are having craft stalls to raise money. These include Arthritis Research, Age UK, Norwich Door to Door, Big C appeal, Aspergers and Norfolk Hospice.
We now have patterns for seafarers including a polo neck warmer which is very simple and a balaclava. We have contacts in King's Lynn and Lowestoft who are able to take the items to those who need them.
Dogs Trust, Snetterton
The Dogs Trust in Snetterton needs warm coats and blankets. Knitted coats are wonderful for the dogs as they can be left on overnight, unlike those coats with buckles and straps. Dogs Trust
Louise Hamilton Centre
The Louise Hamilton Centre offers palliative care support to everyone in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney area. Based in the grounds of the James Paget University Hospital it relies on funds raised in the community as there is no government funding and it costs £150K each year to run. We provide items for fund raising to continue the work of the Centre. Louise Hamilton Centre
We have supported many projects for the Livibility home for disabled young adults at John Grooms Court in Norwich including the 15ft knitted Christmas Tree and the knitted Pergola both of which have been on display in the Forum in Norwich and in many other places. The current project is a Noah's Ark and for this we need lots of animals which will be sold alongside the display from February onwards in support of their funds.
We are always interested in hearing of other charities which would benefit from our skills - particularly where knitting different things is involved. If you have any ideas, just let us know!