CORNWALL, Ontario – Santa and Mrs. Claus dropped into the Benson Centre on Saturday, Dec. 10 to encourage knitters as they participated in a Knit In. Warm Up Cornwall, a non-profit organization, held the Knit In, which asked volunteers of all skill levels to join them to knit warmth items to help keep Cornwall warm.
Co-Founders of Warm Up Cornwall, Chantal and John Gilmour have been keeping Cornwall warm for a few years now. They had been donating knitted items to the Boys and Girls Club, Big Brothers, Big Sister and the Agape Centre as well as leaving items in random areas where people may find themselves in need of a hat, mitts or a scarf. This year they were asked by the Red Cross to take over the Knitting Program. Previous years, John Gilmour explained, the Red Cross program handed out 1,500 to 3,000 items annually.
The group is always looking for more volunteer knitters, but they also have a holiday wish; Warm Up Cornwall needs a donated place to meet.
“Knitting is a social activity.” said John Gilmour. With that in mind, he said, “We need a larger facility, so we can do more Knit Ins. We would like to do this at least two times a week.”
Warm Up Cornwall supplies knitted items to many area charities, as well as providing local schools with a continuous stock of mitts and hats. The small group, including expert knitters, novices and a few yarn rollers who gathered to help fulfill the need, enjoyed the festive guests.
Gilmour later said, “We figure we will hand out 400 sets in just the winter celebration, and another 200 along Pitt Street at bus stops and randomly place within the area.”
Volunteer knitter, Teena Raymond learned of this Knit In from a Facebook post. She explained her grandma taught her to knit as a child. She has recently taken up the hobby again. “It really sucks to be broke and cold in the winter,” she said. “If I can knit something to help someone out, I will.”
Warm up Cornwall has drop off locations for finished items (knitted and non-knitted items) and yarn at different locations in Cornwall. If you have a facility they could use to meet or want more information about the group visit: https://www.facebook.com/Warm.Up.Cornwall.Ontario/
They are always looking for more knitters. Gilmour, who is a yarn roller said, “Knitters are the smartest people I know. Everything they make, they make with love.”