Spring is here…

Hi Everyone,
April showers bring May flowers.. and there are lots of showers this week, so I’m expecting a nice garden in May. Time for your monthly update. Mats are coming in all the time and I’m happy to report that as of yesterday we have sent 1260 mats to Canadian Food for Children and to the homeless in Toronto and Newmarket.
Pick up your bags day/week seems to be working quite well. Many people cannot make it to my home on the exact day, but I have the boxes during that week and they come when they can. This month, we will have the bag day on Tuesday, April 25. Let me know your needs and I will make sure to have what you want.
Before my news, I have one news item that struck me particularly hard this month.. I was watching the CBC news and there was a report about Syrians leaving their city of Mosul to a refugee camp just 20 kms south of their town. The reporter said that over 5000 people PER DAY are fleeing to the camp and there is a lack of water, food and of course shelter.. I thought.. oh how they could use a mat, it would be precious to them. I have no way of getting mats to them, but what struck me was we donated 5729 mats last year, and this camp could have used every one in just ONE day.. wow. The amount of work we did could have been used up in one day.. the need is great all over the world. I am thankful to all of you for your dedication to the milk bag project and the hard work you do.
Over the past couple of years I have had people drop by from the Pan Mission. This mission does work in Nicaragua and they have asked my husband and me to go with them this October. We are delighted to be able to volunteer with the mission. This mission is multi-faceted, but the long and short of it is that the women of Nicaragua are taught how to sew and their items are sold in their markets. Just like the milk bag project in Haiti, the women are given the resources enabling them to make a living for themselves. The pillow cases you donated will be taken to Nicaragua and the ladies will be making dresses out of them to sell in their markets. If you are spring cleaning and find buttons, lace, thread, ribbon, seam binding, please save it and give it to me. I will make sure it gets to the women. The ladies make t-shirts, quilting projects, shorts, PJ’s, diapers from flannel material, hospital gowns, etc. My husband’s project will be working with people who have dental needs and I will be there teaching people how to make milk bag mats. The shipment of milk bags left in a container yesterday.. I sent enough bags for 350 mats. I will also teach the ¬†women how to make the handbags from the plastic. Last week I made 3 large 7 loop frames and took them to Stratford on Friday to be put in the container which was being loaded over the weekend for yesterday’s departure.
I have another request.. the YMCA youth camps have reached out to me. Milk bag mats were made at a camp a couple of years ago and they were such a hit as an activity that they want to put the project in all the camps across Southern Ontario this summer. There is a problem though.. they need frames. They will make some frames but making enough for all the camps is a big job and very expensive. My thought is.. if you are a teacher from a school and your frame is going to be idle over the summer.. would you be willing to loan your frame? I would find out what school you are from, put you in contact with someone from the YMCA, they would pick up and deliver the frame to the camp and then return it for September. I have been told that if any frames are damaged that the YMCA will replace your frame with one of the ones they make. If you would like to see your frame used, please let me know and I will put you in contact with a camp leader in your area.
There is always so much news, but I will stop with this. Thanks again for your hard work and dedication.. remember, April 25th is pick up your bags day. If you don’t know my address, email me and I will give it to you.
Have a great day,