There are knitters from all over helping people from all over and being featured in media stories this week. A 17-year-old New Jersey knitter spent Christmas money on yarn so she could knit hats to give to people who need a little warmth, and she's already donated 10 to a local soup kitchen.
A group of New Zealand knitters knit warm and colorful vests for a group of kids in India and received a special thank you photograph. A yarn shop owner in Massachusetts has started a charity knitting group at her shop, and they've already donated an afghan and a shawl to women in need. A Canadian knitter has knit 1,000 hats in the past four years to warm the children of Pakistan, while middle school students in San Antonio have learned to knit and crochet so they could make hats for babies and young cancer patients and students at a high school in Brooklyn are knitting blankets for people suffering with HIV/AIDS.
A Canadian knitter based in the appropriately named town of Chilliwack knit up a bunch of hats and scarves that were donated to kids at a local elementary school, and she's looking for help to continue warming area kids, and knitters at a Winnipeg retirement home have seen to it that the animals at a local shelter will be warm and cozy through the winter with the donation of crafted cat blankets.
A knitter and librarian in Cleveland left a legacy of knitting and behind when she died of ovarian cancer in 2010. Not only was her collection of knitting books donated to the library, her yarn stash was put to use to keep her fellow Clevelanders warm. Library staff started Warm-Up Cleveland to donate knit items to shelters and others in need. In 2010 more than 200 items were donated and last year more than 500 warm hats, scarves, mittens and more were donated -- along with more yarn to keep the project going.
Students at an alternative high school in Forest Grove, Ore., have suggested making knitting an elective course, but administrators worry the class won't be rigorous enough to be considered schoolwork. The four girls and a boy who started a knitting club at the school said they'd like to get credit for their yarny efforts, and the proposal would make knitting worth half a credit.
A University of Kentucky knitter is using a project requirement of a fellowship she received to knit together the community and the wider world. The Gaines Fellowship, awarded this year to Catherine Brereton, requires recipients to create a project that connects the university to the wider community, and she decided to have others contribute to a knit quilt dedicated to the gay and lesbian community. It's full of stories of people who died of AIDS or committed suicide, but it's also a celebration of the community. The finished quilt will be auctioned to fund a scholarship.
Finally, in audio-visual knitting news, there's the cute story of Minnesota knitters who will only be watching the Super Bowl to check out the scarves, and the profile of a British knitters who's fallen into knitting for big-time movies, including some of the Harry Potter series and the new Steven Spielberg movie "War Horse." Jane Whatley has been a part-time movie knitter for the past 12 years and says she worked for more than 150 hours on garments for "War Horse," most of which were "weathered" or intentionally dirtied and messed up to make for more realistic battle scenes.