Good Afternoon all, and welcome to the Knitting for Brisbane's Needy Blogspot.
Knitting for Brisbane's Needy was started in Jan 2006 by Karen Croke from the Glass House Mountains area of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland in Queensland, Australia.
Karen, and a couple of her friends noticed that the homeless of Queensland were getting a raw deal. "Charities have told us how much new clothing would be appreciated as people don't tend to donate warm clothing for Queensland's needy as they think it doesn't get cold enough here, but it does especially for those living on the streets in the cold and wet. They also like to be able to give some NEW items to the needy as it boosts their self confidence."
Thus started what has become a phenomenom. From those small beginnings, now over 400 members regularly contribute "new, handmade" items that go all over Queensland and beyond. Where-ever a need is perceived, K4BN is ready to help in whatever small way it can. From Beanies, Scarves and Gloves for the homeless, to burial outfits for babies born "sleeping".
We have been trying recently to think of ways to raise our profile in order to generate more funds. As the need for what we do seems to grow on a daily basis, so does the strain on our limited funds. The cost of yarn never seems to go down, and a lot of our members live on pensions themselves. In order to continue providing new, warm items of clothing to those in need, we need to be able raise money to purchase yarn.
We have set up an online shop that sells items specifically made for that purpose. It costs money to post items on the shop, so the "stock" available may not appear great in number, but there is much more where that came from. Please visit our shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/K4BNFundRaiser. All money raised here goes directly to funding our efforts.
Not only do we need to purchase yarn, we also need to get completed items to those who need it, so travel and 'cartage' costs feature strongly in our outgoings. Therefore, any offers of free space in courier trucks, or private cars travelling around Queensland would be gratefully received.
We are in regular contact with numerous charities and community groups in the Greater Brisbane area. We donate items to them for their clients on the strict understanding that all items are given to clients FREE OF CHARGE. No item intended for a disadvantaged person is to be sold. In future posts we will give you a bit of an insight into the work done by some of these groups.
A great initiative by the Brisbane City Council is their Homeless Connect Day, run twice a year since November 2006. K4BN has been a regular contributor since March 2007. At each Homeless Connect Day we have attended so far, we have given out approximately 2,500 new items. These include beanies, scarves, jumpers, personal care packs and blankets. You can learn more about Brisbane City Council's Homeless Connect Day at http://www.brisbane.qld.gov.au/community-support/housing-and-homelessness/homeless-connect/index.htm. It has proved to be so sucessful that the idea has been adopted by the Gold Coast and Ipswich, as well as Sydney.
We will also be posting photos of some of the things we make, we will also be telling you a bit about ourselves, our get togethers that have been fondly entitled "Knit and Natters". It has to be said, that at some of these, there is an awful lot more nattering than knitting done. Not only are they are great way for us to meet and chat, but they act as a central point to drop off donations and collect any yarn that may be available for distribution to our members, who now number over 400 by the way!!
Peter, our esteemed leader Karen's husband jokingly set us a target at the beginning of 2010 to reach 20,100 donations by the end of the year. At the last count, we were not far below that total, and with just over 2 months still to go, we look like we are going to reach that figure.
So folks, watch this space. I am new to blogging, so this is a WIP, and if it looks a bit rough around the edges, that is because it is!! I will be learning as I go, and at the same time hopefully telling you all about our group and the work that we do.
Kate (T.O.O.) which stands for 'the other one' which I will tell you about at a future date!!