Di Jobbins and Di Bracey,members of St Mark’s Darling Point congregation, are on a mission with a difference - a Stitchin’ Mission."The idea is simple," said Di J, “We’re offering five free beginner quiltmaking classes, to be taught by American quilter Linda Hungerford, on Sunday afternoons from 3 to 5 starting on October 25. At the end of five weeks you’ll have created a bright, cheerful child’s quilt which you’re then encouraged to donate to our “mission” - the new KU Marcia Burgess Autism Specific Early Learning & Care Centre opening at Liverpool in mid 2010.”
Fabrics are provided - this dynamic duo has been chasing fabric bargains for the last three months! - and a donation of $10 towards the quilt batting is all that is asked. Participants will also need the use of a sewing machine for out-of-class sewing, and may need to buy or borrow a small number of tools.
Stitchin’ Mission came about when Di learned that her friend Linda Hungerford, originator of the classes, would be visiting Sydney in October and November.
“Linda has conducted 18 Stitchin’ Missions at churches in her hometown, Des Moines, Iowa, and more than 700 quilts have been made over the last 5 years and sent all over the world to orphanages, schools, women’s refuges and to the homeless. At the same time, Di B and I learned that KU Children’s Services was planning to name their new autism specific kindy after a dear friend of ours from St Mark’s, Marcia Burgess, who passed away a couple of years ago. Marcia looked after the interests of Special Needs children in her work with KU, and we felt that mobilising folk to make quilts for these little ones was the perfect way to get involved and help continue Marcia’s work.”
It’s not compulsory to give away your quilt, but Di feels the idea of. ‘paying forward’ the gift of free quiltmaking lessons in the knowledge that a quilt is destined to become a treasured wrap for a pre-schooler, has great appeal. Just how many quilts are needed? “Around 60 to 70”, admits Di, “but we’re confident it won’t be a Mission Impossible!”
To join St Mark’s Stitchin’ Mission email Di Jobbins at email@example.com, phone the St Mark’s church office 9363 3657, or see the Stitchin’ Mission website, www.stitchinmission.org, for online registration.