Quilters’ warm gift from heart

Helen Robartson and Faye Peskett.
Helen Robartson and Faye Peskett.

The group donates its patchwork creations to the Department for Child Protection and Family Support, which distributes them to children in their care.

Organiser Helen Robartson said they started the group in 2008 and met twice a month at the Ocean Keys Sewing Centre.

‘It started because the Whitford Church was organising a sea container of goods to go to South Sudan ” we made quilts and blankets and stuff to send,’ she said.

Mrs Robartson said after that, they made quilts to send to victims of the Victorian bushfires.

She said they then made weight vests for autistic children at a primary school, which had pockets that could be filled with rice bags if teachers wanted the students to focus on something.

‘I thought about the foster children and contacted the Department for Child Protection,’ she said.

‘All the fabric is donated and we sew them all together.

‘Last year, we did about 100 quilts.’

Each quilt has a label embroidered by the members, which says ‘made with love for’ with space for the child who receives it to write their name.

‘That then becomes theirs ” if they get moved from one location to another, the quilt is always theirs,’ the great-grandmother said.

‘Because it has got the child’s name on it, no one can take it away from them.

‘It’s very exciting when a quilt is finished and you see the end product and you know that a child is going to get it.’

Mrs Robartson said the members had a range of skills, with some coming to learn how to sew and others highly experienced in quilting and embroidery.

She said the group met from 1pm to 4pm on the second and fourth Mondays of each month, and her husband John always made a cake.

The Clarkson resident said more volunteers were welcome and people could donate cotton quilting fabric, preferably with brightly colour patterns for children, and cotton thread by giving them to Ocean Keys Sewing Centre owner Kaye Peskett.