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Group of quilters sew comfort and warmth to needy

Quilters Diane Williams, from the left, Edith Hogan, Elaine Burrows, and Judy LaMarsh.
Quilters Diane Williams, from the left, Edith Hogan, Elaine Burrows, and Judy LaMarsh. - Desiree Anstey

Green’s Shore Quilters spread their warmth around the world to those in need

SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. - Colourful homemade quilts, which range from baby to king size, drape across a table and onto the floor.

The sewers, a close-knit group of women that form the Green’s Shore Quilters from Summerside, waste no piece of fabric. They know all too well the value of each block, and the satisfaction of creating something that will benefit those in need.

“We branch from the Canadian Quilting Group,” said one of the coordinators, Edith Hogan.

The group, comprised of 28 members, have donated their quilts to several charitable organizations, including Ronald MacDonald House in St. Johns, and Days for Girls, which provide feminine hygiene flannel kits to girls in Kenya.

Countless lives have been impacted through their generosity.

From teenagers suffering with drug addiction, youth in foster homes, to patients battling with cancer, their homemade patchwork quilts bring colour and comfort to many who may feel alone in the dark.

Edith Hogan, from Summerside, assembled her own family tree quilt that hangs proudly in her kitchen. “It took me one month to make,” she said, with a grin.

Edith (nee Gaudet) Hogan and her sisters made a family tree quilt for a reunion. The quilt contains the names of their ancestors, as well as their grandparents farmhouse in the background, and a treasured black and white photo of them. “It took around a month to make,” said Hogan, with a grin.

Member Judy LaMarsh said, “It’s a way to give back to the community.”

The demand for their quilts across P.E.I. has steadily grown.

“I just delivered a lap quilt to a cancer patient,” said Hogan. “You hate to see anyone who has to get one. We would like to go out of business, but this is the reality. It was especially nice because her husband was there to support her.

“But last week I made a quilt for a child with cancer,” she added.

Green’s Shore Quilters work with Victoria’s Quilts Canada, a Tignish Branch that’s part of a national organization making quilts to comfort people with cancer.

“In the last year we have given 21 tops (the top part of the quilt) to this Branch. They will then sandwich the quilt together, before donating it to a cancer patient.

“And the reaction I often get is, ‘you don’t know me and yet you made me a quilt.’ They are very touched, and you do feel connected,” said Hogan.

Many members of the Green’s Shore Quilters said that they “enjoy the fellowship” and “social outing” they get from being a part of the group.

“I moved to P.E.I. from New Brunswick and joined the group to make new friends with the same interests,” said member Diane Williams.

Elaine Burrows agreed with Williams and said, “I’ve been with the group since 2009. I joined for the camaraderie, doing something that I love, and giving back to the community.”

Members typically meet on Thursdays at the St. Eleanors Community Centre in Summerside, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“We’re open to anyone, sewers and quilters. It’s a big room with lots of light, big tables, and a library filled with related books and quilting patterns for members,” said LaMarsh.

Aside from the regular Thursday meetings, members enjoy retreats and workshops throughout the year.

The next Green’s Shore Show and Tell meeting will be held at St. Eleanors Community Centre on Thursday, Feb. 15.

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