University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries

Community Members

Warm up with the Libraries’ Charity Knitting & Crocheting group

Memorial Library's Ellen Jacks (left) and Steenbock Library's Barb Sisolak proudly display the blanket created by Steenbock Library's charity knitting group.

Memorial Library’s Ellen Jacks (left) and Steenbock Library’s Barb Sisolak proudly display the blanket created by Steenbock Library’s charity knitting group.

The holiday season may be over, but the weather outside is still frightful—what better way to warm up than by catching up with the UW–Madison Libraries’ Charity Knitting & Crocheting group? We checked in with the group’s organizer, Ellen Jacks, to see what they’ve been up to this winter.

Ellen was happy to report that the group recently connected with Lois Anderson, a retiree from the UW Foundation and current member of the Madison Knitters Guild, who volunteers at several local shelters. Anderson generously donated two large bags of yarn and 10-20 sets of knitting needles she acquired through members of the Knitters Guild. Ellen provided Anderson with twenty-six scarves, two headbands/ear warmers, sixteen hats, and one baby sweater, which will be donated to the Domestic Abuse Intervention Services (DAIS) shelter. All of the items were created by the Libraries’ Charity Knitting & Crocheting group or by family of library employees.

In addition to these items, the group also donated the large blanket created at the Steenbock Library charity knitting group, of which Ellen was a part (and also served as her inspiration for starting the group at Memorial). Though the Steenbock knitting group no longer meets, the staff at Steenbock graciously provided the Libraries’ Charity Knitting & Crocheting group with all of their donations, including several boxes of yarn and completed rectangles to be stitched into more blankets.

Starting in January, the group will be creating lap blankets from the pieces created by both groups. These blankets will be donated to Agrace Hospice and Palliative Care, where there is a big need for lap blankets.

The Libraries’ Charity Knitting & Crocheting group will continue to meet on Wednesdays, from noon to 1:00pm in Memorial Commons on the 4th floor of Memorial Library. All are welcome to attend! If you can’t make it to the meetings, the group also accepts donations of completed 7” x 9” pieces and any other garments or accessories. There is always a need in the community for warm items, especially this time of year, so please consider sharing the warmth by crafting for a cause.

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