This holiday season, a small but dedicated group of knitters at Trinity Episcopal Parish in Wilmington continues to use the warmth in their hearts to give a little warmth to those in need.
For years, the group has knit hats, scarves, and mittens for organizations such as Seamen’s Center of Wilmington. But this winter — they are trying something new.
While the usual donations are continuing, the group is also placing hand-knit items around the city in areas where those in need can find them. Tagged on the hats, scarves, and mittens are labels that read “I’M NOT LOST — Please take me if you need a little warmth.” On the back of the label, Trinity’s address is listed as well as a reminder that all are welcome.
Ashlin Bray, who manages the knitting program and giveaway, discovered the “I’m Not Lost” concept through a knitting blog. This distribution method has spread across the country over the past decade to help warm communities during the harsh winter months. Starting last week — it reached the streets of Wilmington.
Ashlin Bray believes that the group “felt like this was a more personal connection” than outright donating items.
Beverly Van Horne, another knitter in the group, agrees, adding that “sometimes, people are new to a community and they have no place to go and they don’t know what the resources are.” Through this new plan, the knitters hope to reach those community members and express their concern by offering a hand-knit hat, scarf, or pair of mittens.
And these items are no easy feat to make, either. Many members of the group have been knitting all of their lives and Beverly Van Horne calls their work “pieces of art.” With this experience and obvious expertise, Ashlin and Beverly both agree that even the fastest knitters in the group need a whole day to finish one hat.
Luckily, meetings twice a month offer the knitters fellowship and warm conversation while they work hard on their hats, scarves, and mittens. “While we are knitting,” Beverly states, “we too are being knit together as a community.”
The small group of knitters from Trinity are making sure that nobody is being left out this holiday season. With every hand-knit item left somewhere like Rodney Square or the Wilmington Free Library, the members of our community most in need will know that somebody cares.
If you are interested in helping out, please give Trinity Church a call at (302) 652-8605. The “Knitting for Others” group meets on the second and fourth Monday of every month starting at 9:30 am; they welcome knitters of all levels.