Knit-a-Thon benefits babies, people on street

With the help of Kong Heang Vong, right, Linda Tanner attaches a pompom to the top of a preemie stocking cap Saturday during the second day of a three-day Knit-a-Thon being held at the Community of Christ Church, 2880 B 1/2 Road.

Five years ago, Community of Christ Youth and Young Adult Leader Naomi Barlow received several tubs of yarn from Mesa Developmental Services, now Strive.

She wasn’t quite sure what to do with all that yarn at first but decided to enlist the help of community members, fellow congregants and kids at church to knit hats for newborns and oncology patients at St. Mary’s Hospital and to make hats to give out to homeless people, along with goodie bags of snacks, socks and hand wipes.

Barlow and others make the hats each January, still drawing from that donated pile of yarn, during a Knit-a-Thon at Community of Christ at 2880 B 1/2 Road.

A small cluster of participants worked on needles and looms throughout the day as movies played on a church wall to entertain the kids.

Jackie Brammeier showed off a tiny pair of booties tucked into a matching hat she made for a newborn baby two hours into the Knit-a-Thon. This was her third year making items to donate to infants, cancer patients and homeless people at the annual event. She also makes items at home throughout the year to donate.

“It’s something little but it gives a child a good start or gives a homeless person something to cover their head. It’s not much but it helps,” she said.

Debbie Schultz, pastor at Community of Christ, said she doesn’t knit or crochet at home but likes to help with the Knit-a-Thon.

“I think it’s a nice opportunity to provide something for the community,” she said.

Barlow said nurses at St. Mary’s love to coo over the group’s donations each time she delivers another round of hats to the hospital.

Homeless people who she gives the hats to when she sees them on street corners are “always really appreciative,” she said.

“There are times I’ve seen people around town wearing our hats. It feels good,” she said.


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