KasSnippets - April 2015

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KasSnippets - April 2015

 

REPORTS FROM SOUTH AFRICA

by Ronda Lowrie

TOGETHER WE CAN DO MORE!

In July 2014 we visited two day-care centres – Vukuzenzele and Zenzele.  I looked up the meaning of these names and there are a few variations, but my favourite one I have used as the headline for this report.  Some of the others included:

“To make something out of nothing”

“To do it yourself”

“To wake up and do it yourself”

All of these aptly describe so many of the day-care centres that we visit, groups of people who come together and make do with the little they have, in order to make a difference in the lives of these precious children.

Our first stop was Vukuzenzele.  This is a very small centre and the area around the school was barren and depressing.

This lovely little girl helped us sort and hand out everything and she ensured that the boys and girls got the correct sizes and colour items.

Full Report : please click here

Previous Reports :

KAS SOUTH AFRICA IN FULL SWING !

HOBBY-X and THE SALVATION DAY CARE CENTRE

NEWS UPDATE ON THE

NAVY BLUE SCARF CHALLENGE

by Pam Antink

Currently, 120 navy blue scarves have arrived at the office!

To see the rest of the discussion, patterns and photographs of the lovely contributions from members  please click here

KNIT-A-SQUARE FINANCES 

Pay the Office Rent for a Day

Our harding work co-team workers in the much needed office!

When Linda set-up the discussion on the forum, Mary (Scotland) made the suggestion that we included a visual image of the days being purchased so members could see the progress being made!

We found a Dutch company Availability Calendars, who with much patience and support, helped us get a calendar system embedded into our Ning system!

Here are the results for April!

 In April members purchased all the days in pink - 25 days rental paid for!

The office rent is always going to be an ongoing expense that needs to be covered, and, we already have 6 days rent in May, 2 in June and 1 in August which has contributed a total of around $1700 to help Ronda relax and know that office rental is being taken care of by the Knit-a-Square  Members!

Many of the days purchased are for special celebrations such as birthdays, anniversaries, newborn arrivals, Easter Sunday, in memory of loved ones now passed.

We have also set up a system whereby members can 'donate a days rent' anonymously.

One story which caused much amusement came from Cath Riley, who 'asked' her family to sponsor a days rent in exchange for 40 years of Sunday roasts, and ALL the potatoes peeled over the years! They obliged!

If you would like to read the stories behind the donations and check  the 

OPEN CALENDAR progress in order to view the next 3 months schedule 

please click here

In addition, members who cannot afford a complete day are forming teams to jointly make a purchase, we've had the Terrific Tenners, Fabulous Fivers and the wonderful Helen Flagg is co-ordinating the Nifty Niners on the USA Group page!

KAS REACHES GREAT HEIGHTS FOR CHILDREN

A JOURNEY AROUND THE WORLD !

This challenge is going to take us around the planet whilst reaching great heights & piles of squares - 178,000 to be precise, in order to reach the top of Table Mountain, Cape Town in South Africa!

We are going to need 50 squares for every foot climbed!

Thankfully efforts of the postal strike are waning and our total is climbing ever higher! In the past month we have visited Greece, Paraguay, Norway, New Hampshire USA, Wales, Caribbean Netherlands, Hawaii, Peru, France, Australia and are currently targeting Tugela Falls in South Africa for which we need 155,500 squares!

We are now 22,500 squares away from our final target of Table Mountain in South Africa - maybe we'll get there in time for Mandela Day in July 18th!

Here is the link to add your squares : here!

WHAT'S GOING ON IN SOUTH AFRICA?

TWO SPECIAL THANK YOU'S TO KNIT-A-SQUARE

A little bit of news from Ronda : 

Another precious little one rescued from dire circumstances. 

Knit-a-Square donates just R100 per month to Peace Agency in Durban, and in return they send us little snippets like this. 

A drop in the ocean, but always encouraging to know that just ONE more little South African baby has been saved from uncertainty and abuse and misery in life.

Message accompanying the photograph : Hi Friends, this beautiful little girl was abandoned last week and came to us on Friday. She is just two weeks old. Much love from us all at the Baby House! Justin

 

LITTLE RHONDA

Above is a beautiful life-sized dolly sent to KAS some time ago by Maria Teresa Cleasby (UK).

Ronda & Wendy decided to hold the doll back because they perceived that it would be of special use as the doll is "anatomically correct" and might assist children verbalising their pain and suffering.

And at last it has found a special home.

The doll was given to the Benoni Rotary who support a child sexual assault clinic along with other toys, beanies etc., sent by KAS members. The clinic sent this letter of thanks to the Benoni Rotary, who, in turn, forwarded it to Ronda.

To read the letter : please click here

SORTED IN SOUTH AFRICA

- THE OFFICE

See more pics here!

DISTRIBUTION PHOTOGRAPHS

Link to recent recent photographs

Mama Ntombi Community Projects

Sihle was really struggling with his eyesight and was not coping well at school. Thanks to Spec Savers he was given spectacles to correct his vision problems at no cost. We also bought him a new set of school uniforms and shoes and saw an immedate transformation in this child. 

To read more please click here

SPREADING THE WORD,

MEMBERS & GROUP NEWS 

BBC VISITS KAS MELTON MOWBRAY (UK)

Thanks to Rebecca Price and the More Coffee Cafe in Melton Mowbray the BBC East Midlands TV in March visited and filmed the KAS Knitters as they enjoyed conversation and coffee whilst making squares to send to South Africa!

Click here to view video - which is on Facebook.

In addition the team were featured the following week in the local Melton Times -  fame and notoriety at last!

*******

GROUP FOCUS - LOUISE TIDMAN & FRIENDS

WILTSHIRE (UK) - introduced by Anne Powell

Most forum members will be familiar with the name Louise Tidman and the many photos she posts of the stacks of squares she and her group are sending to KAS.

This group started with a poster in a tea-room in Tewksbury Abbey, Gloucester, UK which Louise, who is from nearby Wiltshire, noticed during a visit there. The poster was about a group called K2tog who knit squares for KAS. Louise contacted the organizer - Jill Lea (Twinge) who you all will know from the Forum.

The rest is history. Louise checked out the KAS website and began knitting. She was soon joined by her neighbour Sarah and a friend Jude Sullivan. Jude and Louise mentioned KAS in a monthly knitting group they both attend in Wiltshire and within a few days squares started coming in.

In the beginning she advertised in the village magazine for donations of wool, and several people contacted her offering to knit and crochet squares, along with offers of sack loads of wool.

Louise now has about FIFTY ladies and ONE man knitting for her on a regular basis!! She updates the village with their progress every couple of months in the village magazine, which keeps a steady flow of wool donations and squares coming in.

Louise is the main organiser but Jude and Sarah are pro-active in helping her raise funds.

This amazing group has the same problem all of us do - postage funds - but they are undaunted and have set an example, for all of us who gather large numbers of squares, to follow.

The group has had financial donations from friends and family and they organised a coffee morning on March 14th in the Wiltshire Village Hall.

Thanks to the support of the community, they didn’t need to spend any money on organising the coffee morning. Two people paid the cost of hiring the hall, someone else printed and laminated the advertising posters, twenty+ people offered to make cakes to be sold, and they were given 15 raffle prizes, a whole pile of bric-a-brac to sell and one person even offered to sell their homemade jewellery and donate money to the shipping fund.

The ladies had "T" shirts printed to advertise KAS and wore them at the coffee morning.

Jude also did a separate "fuel fund" display so that folks realise money is needed in SA to distribute the blankets, jumpers, hats etc.  Jude crocheted the wonderful South African flag coloured squares which should arrive in time for a Mandela day blanket.

The coffee morning on March 14th was a great success, Approximately 100 people came along to support them and they raised over £800!! The group was overwhelmed by the positive reaction from everyone and the amount of money raised!

Not content to rest on their laurels, they are now mulling over future fund raising ideas, eg, a summer garden party with afternoon tea, a sponsored walk or sponsored bike ride and sponsoring the shipment of a box by paying £1 per week.

This group, because of the enormous quantity of squares they send, have discovered that using a shipping company, rather than the post office is a more practical way of sending their squares.

Louise says, "KAS has become a big part of my life in such a short space of time. I like how friendly and encouraging everyone is on the forum. It's great to send squares then a few weeks later see them being unpacked and sorted in SA, then see them made into blankets and best of all distributed to the children. It's fantastic and the most wonderful thing is it's all done by volunteers, TRULY AMAZING!! "

Hats off and a big KAS hug to Louise and her friends as well as to the very supportive community of Wiltshire. Thank you for all you are doing for Knit-a-Square.

Sarah, Louise and Jude

 

A fabulous display!

Knitting in the Czech Republic

by Eva Adamkova

 300 squares made by Jitka Svrckova and her students - Sezemice

Yet another school from the Czech Republic is making a wonderful contribution 

please click here to add your comments

Kids from Elementary School Javornik, Czech republic + their parents, grandparents, teachers = 428 squares

Aren't these children and their families from the schools of the Czech Republic wonderful!

THEME OF THE MONTH

April 2015 - a Variegated Theme....... with a Twist

lead by Bev Jeffery (Australia)

Here is the twist!

Bev has been saving her coins....and....
this is where you come in, KASfriends.....
Bev will contribute to KAS office rental, $1 for every 4 VARIEGATED squares posted here this month....
To the total value of $160 !

update

In fact the thermometer has reached its target of $160 and has since been increased and growing thanks to help and support from some of our KasSisters!

Some of the contributions that have arrived so far :

APRIL 2015 THEMEApril 2015 - A Variegated theme...with a twistApril Challenge 1,jpg2April ThemeApril - Variegated (Self Striping :)April ThemeApril Theme - Variegated squaresTwelveDiagonalsVariegatedApril ThemeApril Challenge -variegated squaresVariegated square!14/4/15 April theme square oneA Rainbow square :-)April ThemeApril Challenge 2015 - Varigatedknitted by RoseApril Theme - Variegated2 variegated squares from Val W.IMG_0413

Here is a selection of the recent single colour squares - which are the backbone of KAS blankets and provide a wonderful frame for the above more exotic squares:

March 2015 Theme - Citrus squares    Ready to ship another blanket in red, green and off-white!    Made by Inez    Butterfly blanket

and here are some of the April much needed hats & hand-warmers!

beaniesIMG_0409parcel 21 march 2015April Challenge - VariegatedHat and handwarmersHandwarmers (4)March 2015 Hand Warmers 18March 2015IMG_0410

To see more this months contributions please click here

 MONTHLY THEMES FOR 2015

MAY - One-Color Squares - PJs and Textures [Including Autumn Glory, Pretty Pinks, Ruby Reds ... and so on.] - Gloria Grandy

JUNE - Stitchtastic - a celebration of Stitches, Stripes & Zig Zags - another popular item - Pam Antink

JULY  - Christmas - Glorious Greens & Reds - Debbie Posmontier and Sue Gillman

AUGUST -  "Flags - the international KAS community" - Heather Mensah

SEPTEMBER - Fabulous Faces - Smiley faces, Animal & People faces - Robin Monsees

OCTOBER - Grannies & Garters - Susan Donaldson

NOVEMBER - Oceans/Land/Sky/Space - Valerie Zalewski supported by Linda Maltby

DECEMBER - Year End UFOs, Stash Busters, Plain Janes, Easy Peezies and other Favorites - Susan Haines

TALLY  or ITEM COUNT NEWS

by Linda Maltby

2015 March Squares List

Visit www.knit-a-square.com.   Click on "Received Squares"

Click HERE for the graphs for hats and tops. 

Squares: 13,196 [377 blankets]

The total is lower than the last 2 months because of a slow down by South African postal workers which caused the cancellation of 2 opening days in March. 

MAY PATTERN OF THE MONTH

by Linda Maltby

Hand-Warmers

Crochet and knit patterns by Linda Maltby (Canada)

Blankets keep children in South Africa warm.

But sitting in an unheated classroom, little hands start to feel the chill and it becomes difficult to write.

This is when Hand-Warmers are needed !

  

Hand-Warmers are a great item for the children.  The fingers are free while their hands and wrists are kept warm.

Hand-Warmers are fast and easy to make, either with a hook or needles.

The ribbing allows for extra warmth as well as stretch to fit the child as they grow.  Soft, acrylic yarn is fine and makes a cozy covering for the hand. However, if you are concerned about warmth please use 100% wool or a wool/acrylic blend. Do not use a thicker yarn as the children need to be able to write while wearing the HWs.

For crocheters, please look carefully at the photo below before joining the sides.  The ribbing must go around the hand to give the HW the needed stretch so that every child can wear them.  If their hands are small the Hand-Warmers will fit neatly, if their hands are larger the ribbing will stretch to fit the hands.  Try the Hand-Warmers on your hands….does it stretch to fit your hand (a bit tight but it will stretch).  If there isn’t any stretch then the direction of the ribbing needs to go the other way.

The HWs must ‘hug’ the hand to be useful.

As Ronda mentioned:  “I think they are fun and helpful to the kids … better than gloves in terms of easier fitting and fingers free, too.”

 

Patterns for both the

 Knit pattern and Crochet pattern

are available in the

KAS Pattern Book

Just a quickie mention that next month, we will feature a Loom Knit Comfort Doll devised by our own Denise aka LoomaHat!

Here is the link for those who cannot wait in the KAS Pattern Book

 Loom Comfort Doll

SQUARE HEART OF THE MONTH AWARD

edited this month by Gloria Grandy

THE SQUARE HEART AWARD FOR APRIL 2015 IS FOR

JOHN AND JOAN YEARDLEY 

Swansea - United Kingdom

Since joining our Forum in August of 2012, this lovely husband and wife team has been sharing their time, their talent, and their love for the children in South Africa.

Joan says, "We first became interested in the children on a visit to S.A. in 2003 when we were taken on a visit to a nursery where John thought he would be seeing lots of plants and flowers.  Wrong!  It was a children’s nursery.  The kids were looked after while their mothers were taught to sew and knit.  This was a charity which we support.  We never forgot the experience, and when we were introduced to Knit a Square it was something we had to do.  Now we both love making a difference."

To read the rest of the award : please click here

KAS FACEBOOK PAGE

Lion SquareMulti coloured dollyHand Knitted CuddliesWoven Pocket Doll #2Top view....lots of scraps usedKAS Baby Doll

We have received an additional 266 Likes on the Facebook page so far during March-April period, taking our total to 9,640 !  We could hit the 10,000 mark in the next 2 months!
We also copy the messages etc received on Facebook to the 

Forum for anyone who is not a member of FB.

WHAT IS YOUR YARN NAME ?

Our resident humorists Anne Powell & Wendy Lewis (Canada) have developed "What's Your Yarn Name?" for us to laugh at ourselves and have some whimsical fun!

Find your own 'fun name' and share with friends!  Also, why not visit the link below and add your name to the comment box!  Ronda loves her name : Bobbles Oops-a-Lot !

Go to What's Your Yarn Name to join in the fun!

We featured this piece of whimsical fun on the KAS Facebook page and it broke all our records!

So far it has reached 13,944 FaceBookers and climbing; 105 people shared it to their own personal pages for their friends to view, and, 91 people posted their yarn names on our page!

FINAL THOUGHTS