July 18, 2012
The YWCA Central Alabama recently celebrated Christmas in July when 23 elves from the Birmingham Quilters Guild (BQG) stopped by to help prepare for Santa's Workshop.
Sewing machines and cutting boards covered the Sloss Room at the YWCA as members of the BQG made over 600 items for Santa's Workshop which is held every December.
"Our members were so impressed by Santa's Workshop last year that we definitely wanted to help with Christmas in July to prepare for this year's event," said Vasha Rosenblum, President of the Birmingham Quilter's Guild. "We are a group of women who like to sew and help other people, so it's a perfect fit."
The mission of the BQG is to promote the love of quilts, to encourage and preserve the art of quilts and quilting and to contribute friendship, knowledge and encouragement to others.
The group also brought 39 cuddle quilts for children in the YW's child care center. All members are requested to make at least one cuddle quilt per year.
"I was thrilled that so many of our members were able to attend. We had a great time getting an early start making these crafts that will brighten the holidays for many children and parents. Being able to help others makes us feel good," Rosenblum added.
Santa's Workshop brings the magic of the holidays to homeless families by offering parents the opportunity to "shop" for free gifts for their children, while children create festive holiday crafts for their family members. The children are even able to have their picture taken with Santa! There were over 350 volunteers and 150 families served at last year's event. Santa's Workshop 2012 will be held on Saturday, December 15th.
Among the crafts that the children make each year are jean purses, draft dodgers and fleece pillows. The children will complete these sewn items using embellishments and give them as gifts for their families and friends.
"To say that we are happy with our partnership with the Guild would be an understatement - this group has been an incredible blessing to the children and families that we serve - through not only the Santa's Workshop crafts, but with the sweet cuddle quilts as well," said Mary Jane Gibson, Coordinator of Volunteers and My Sister's Closet.
The YW would like to extend a special thank you to the Birmingham Quilters Guild for sharing their time and talents to help make a difference in the lives of those we serve.
Santa's Workshop would not be possible without its generous donors and fantastic volunteers. The YWCA is always looking for volunteers to donate their time, talent and treasures to those who will need a helping hand this holiday season. It truly is a magical day for everyone involved.
If you or your group is interested in hosting a toy drive or volunteering for Santa's Workshop, please click here.
To support the programs of the YWCA, please click here.