KasSnippets - August 2013
KasSnippets - August 2013
Reporting KAS in South Africa
Most weeks on the Forum we will be having a report on the activities of the KAS organisation from either Ronda or Wendy to keep us in touch with events in South Africa, volunteers and distributions. Below is the most recent report :
Another week has just whizzed by and as always there is so much on the go!!!!
On Saturday, my daughter, Sarah, and I met Abegail and her daughter, Mandy, at the office. I wish I had taken a photo of Mandy sitting sorting all the beanies, but she has done an amazing job. Here are just some of the beautifully sized and stacked beanies:
I mentioned last week that I am looking for additional people to help sew together blankets and my first port of call this week was House Elpidos where I met Louise Zietsman. Louise’s son was diagnosed with schizophrenia at the age of 19 and Louise decided to leave her full time job and dedicate her time to helping him establish a normal lifestyle. She quickly realised that this was easier said than done because of the serious lack of support for young adults diagnosed with schizophrenia. So, she decided to be that support, not only for her son, but for eight other people between the ages of 25 and 45. She purchased a house located near to the facility they visit twice a week for occupational therapy and created a family home. Louise is very interested in KAS and has taken a blanket pack to see whether she can interest some of the residents in helping sew them together. We certainly hope we can welcome them on board shortly.
Speaking of volunteers who help us sew, we were thrilled to receive a large batch of beautifully sewn together blankets from the dedicated gogos of Soweto who meet at the Chiawelo Community Centre very near to where Lindi and Wandi live. These ladies have been sewing blankets for KAS for years now and we have always been grateful for their support. We look forward to distributing these shortly.
To read the rest of the Wendy's report please Click here
For the other recent reports :
The irresistible and irrepressible children of
South Africa Appeal
On 29th June Sandy sent out the Critical Appeal for US$9,000 and within 48 hours KAS received $5,427 of which $4,500 came from a single donation in memory of the donor's recently departed partner. Along with other donations we were able to send Ronda a sizeable chunk of spending money for distributions and the setting up of the new offices!
However, Sandy can now announce that our wonderful donor who gave us $4,500 towards the appeal, has doubled it! Therefore, so far we have received $9,000 from this incredibly supportive lady, and, have received $4,000 in additional donations. These contributions have been sent to Ronda!
Our major donor has requested that we place a memorial plaque in the new offices in memory of her partner. Sandy is going to design it and Wendy will organise getting it made. The KAS offices are already a special place, but to have a dedication and testament for someone who was very remarkable for one of our members will be like a sacred blessing for the offices and the work that will go on within.
THE KNIT-A-SQUARE SHOP
Please go to the Knit-A-Square Shop today and purchase something special to support the day-to-day operations (KasOps) directly in South Africa. We will be adding one or two short term items for which KAS will need support shortly!
You can also help with :
For $5 members can provide a creche or day centre with a Ream of paper!
From the very beginning of Knit-a-Square, kind hearted members have included slip-ins in their parcels, many of which are pencils, crayons, stickers etc., Now, Ronda will be able to purchase reams of paper and take them to the distributions along with the many creative materials you send. Having paper can start the process of education and give the children the chance to create imaginative and artistic work - plus having some fun! It will be lovely to see the walls of the classrooms covered in work by the children!
Between now and 16th September we would like everyone sending squares to record them on this discussion.
We filled the KASvan after only 9 weeks of counting.
Now we are gathering squares for a second filling.
[To fill the KasVan we need 9,250 squares]
We are on our way to filling the KASvan second time!
The total for the second van has reached 4,641, therefore we still need just under 5,000 squares to reach the back doors! Please do add your squares and keep this total up & running!
The Moderator team are already discussing the next challenge to take over from filling the KasVan! It is going to be VERY CHALLENGING indeed, and has been named :
"KAS REACHES GREAT HEIGHTS FOR CHILDREN"
The challenge will involve a Sight Seeing Trip Around the World and pile upon pile of squares! We need 50 squares per foot! Our starting point will be The Little Mermaid in Copenhagen Harbour, Denmark - she is 4ft, so we need 200 squares to measure up to the tip of her head. Once this has been reached, will move onto the next target which is likely to be the Great Sphinx of Giza in Egypt. At 20ft high the target has to reach 1,000 squares. Essentially, each time members add their squares we are going to move the target even higher! The final part of the challenge is to reach the top of Table Mountain in Cape Town South Africa, which stands at 3,558 ft and requires 178,000 squares!
The challenge is likely to be posted on the Forum on Tuesday 17th September.
We need members to post every possible square into this challenge and would love to see photographs of your piles!
WHAT'S GOING ON IN SOUTH AFRICA?
Through Maureen Keane-Murphy we have made contact with Mama Ntombi Community Projects (MNCP) in Pietermaritzburg in the Natal Province of South Africa. KAS recently sent its first consignment of tops, hats and blanket packs.
The photographs we received were quite heartrending and the need in this area is considerable. There is a second batch of photos on the next page. KAS will be sending another supply of your contributions shortly. As well as photographs there is a beautiful 'thank you' letter from Sandra Pillay (Project Manager).
The project began in 2007 when a local Church Pastor, deeply moved by the living conditions in the nearby Jika Joe Settlement, longed to play an active role in bringing HOPE to that community. Today a team of 50 volunteers work with MNCP in two Pietermaritzburg Informal Settlements – Jika Joe and Matison. The aim is to change the present status and self esteem of orphaned and vulnerable children so that they become achievers in life. Programmes embrace a weekly feeding scheme for destitute children and the provision of a basic food hamper for the rest of the week; life skills training including teaching good moral and ethical values; cultural and sporting opportunities that also keep kids off the streets; a week-long holiday club during
Here is the link to the Mama Ntombi Facebook page.
The JBay Recycling Project & Stitch Witch News
We were invited to the Victory4All School this morning in Pellsrus to tell them all about the Stitch Witches Knitting Charity and how the blankets get to the children of the Jbay Recycling Project. Here you can see us with the Principal Mr. Pierre de Villiers and our future knitters
Gitta Seyfert - Pierre de Villiers - Helen Warren
The Stitch Witch Group's blankets are still very popular!
Ten Thousand Homes News from Ginger Coffin
Ginger Coffin and Katie Sears spent a week at Ten Thousand Homes in White River, South Africa a week ago. While there we threaded together squares from Knit-a-Square to make 7 blankets for Michael (20 yrs old, Legogote) and his family consisting of younger siblings and a cousin with an 18 month old baby girl. It was 40 degrees F at night while we were there and I can promise you, they were immensely grateful for these blankets - in fact Michael wore his like a cape for photos before we left. THANKS SO MUCH for all you are doing to provide some warmth to this family and others who live in poverty in this beautiful land. I was honored to be a part of it.
DISTRIBUTIONS & BLANKETS
Ronda, Wendy and the team have had an extremely busy few weeks, here are some photos from the more recent distributions :
Fundani Nathi on Nelson Mandela Day
Lungile Dube in the Orlando East Area of Soweto
Retsepisitswe Day Centre in August
Here are some of the wonderful red & white hats that galvanized our members last Summer and Autumn!
Blankets - more and more completed blankets have been added to The Knit-a-Square Blanket Album - you may even spot your squares!
Many of you may recall in the July KasSnippets a company IEMAS visited the KAS offices with 2,500 square on the very day KAS moved into the new offices. The ladies were accompanied by Edwin. Because he had been so helpful with the knitting of squares Ronda took a special photograph of him actually knitting!
Sadly, we have to report that, the very next day Edwin died in a car accident. We honour his memory with love and graditude for being part of the IEMAS Mandela Day contribution. The team said he was SO happy to be part of the project.
We send our deepest sympathy to Edwin's family, and, hope they will find love, peace and strength during this very sad time.
SORTED IN AFRICA
To see more open day photographs please go to Sorted in Africa
Over the years Ronda has received lots of wonderful letters from school children who want to help. We'll share them gradually that came from the 3M class, Ambleside, Tasmania Island (Australia) :
The Challenge for September will be lead by
Anne Powell (Canada) and the focus will be
Here is the list for the rest of the year for those of you who like to snap up bargain yarns in preparation! The list can be accessed on the Forum - Challenge Themes for 2013
SQUARE LISTS - TALLY - ITEM COUNT
Square Lists for July is ready for viewing.
Received in July : Squares 16,985 (485 blankets);
Tops 317 and Beanies 1,937
For further details go to the discussion page Square Lists - Tally - Item Count for previous months.
Please don't forget to include your email address so that you receive an acknowledgement once the parcel has been opened! The files that Erica created for the Package Inventory to make parcel opening day easier for the team in South Africa, and for keeping track of all the items received, are in the lower left hand corner of the discussion. These files can be downloaded.
SEPTEMBER PATTERN OF THE MONTH
by Linda Maltby
A Warm-Hearted Square by Anneke Sevink (The Netherlands)
Anneke has created a beautiful heart to adorn a square
This is lovely way to warm the children and let them know that people around the world care.
The Heart is one of the many patterns to be found in theThe KAS Pattern Book.
If you see another pattern you would like to try, please do!
SPREADING THE WORD & GROUP DEVELOPMENT
PAOLA FERRARI in BOLOGNA - ITALY
You may remember that we featured a photograph of Paola fundraising and spreading the world at her school in the June edition of KasSnippets. Well, here is a follow-up report from Paola :
My students at "Saffi" secondary school. They made these squares during an afterschool group, from Febrary to May. Our squares are now on their way to South Africa... From Italy with Love.
SPREADING THE WORD IN MY CORNER OF FRANCE - Valerie Zalewski
Our Anglo-French association holds an annual cricket match in the little town where we meet. I have to thank Viola and Gill for all their help. I made up info material (English on one side and French on the other) and Viola took a great bundle and walked all round the ground handing them out to everyone she met. It must have worked as we had a lot of people coming to buy, but also just to have more information. Click here to read the full report.
SQUARE HEART OF THE MONTH AWARD
Edited this month by Laurie Fortier
has gone to Rachel A. (USA)
Rachel is a crochet artist! She also had the brilliant idea to secure the butterfly ends with a plastic needle. It is quicker than sewing and provides a needle with each square!
Rachel is not only dedicated to KAS. She is a military wife and mother of five beautiful children. Rachel doesn't want her children to simply learn by her example. She wants them to do their part so she has taught them to knit and crochet.
KAS FACEBOOK PAGE
We have received an additional 102 Likes on the Facebook page so far during August taking our total to 6,047! We broke through the 6,000 milestone in late July! We also copy the messages etc received on Facebook to the Forum for anyone who is not a member of FB.
It is definitely a small world these days - KAS attracts KAS !
Recently Janet Callow - Lincoln (UK) posted on the KAS Facebook page :
"I was thrilled recently to meet a lovely lady from South Africa called Sheelagh who sews the squares into blankets. We met on a narrowboat on a canal in Shropshire, England. A lovely coincidence!"