A compassionate group in Pennington has created 2,000 quilts to help comfort children experiencing trauma, injury or illness.
The group is called the Pennington Quilters for Kids, whose members construct the patchwork quilts that are donated to the national organization Quilts For Kids.
According to Quilts For Kids officials, the organization’s mission is to transform fabrics into patchwork quilts to comfort children facing serious illness, injury or trauma.
“We got to 2,000 quilts in November of 2018. It took us four and half years to do 1,000 quilts and two and a half years after that to do another 1,000, due to our increase in membership,” said Debbie Greaney, the leader of the quilt group. “Everyone in the group looks forward to every month, not only because we are doing something wonderful to help children, but because we enjoy each others company.”
She said the quilts they create mean so much to the children they are donated to.
“When I first started, the quilts were going only to care facilities, hospitals and children who were chronically ill. Since then, there have been so many natural disasters, we have started sending quilts to disaster areas to comfort children as well,” Greaney said. “People call an ask for these quilts from the national organization. I was told even our quilts are carried by policeman, who encounter children who are scared due to being in a terrible situation. The quilts help comfort the child and allow them to open up to the officers.”
She said the average size of the quilts are 38 inches by 42 inches.
Under Greaney’s leadership, the group has grown since 2011.
“In October of 2011, I was the only one sewing in the group,” she said. “The Pennington Quilt Works shop was so instrumental in growing the group. While I would be sewing in the shop they would send people who they thought would be interested in joining the group back to talk to me.”
Now there are about 30 members who participate monthly in the group, which consists of mostly retired women, she reported.
“Twenty members participate monthly at the workshop. There are about five to 10 more who participate even though they do not sew with us,” Greaney said.
She said even though people can participate while there at home, the group cannot take on any more members who want sew in person with the group due to limited space at the shop.
The Pennington Quilt Works shop, where the group meetings take place, is located at 7 Tree Farm Rd. in Pennington.
The owner of the shop, Jane Crane, has been instrumental in the group’s success, according to Greaney.
“Jane Crane is the most generous and helpful person to us. For her to let us use the shop, the equipment and donated fabric in the shop is just amazing,” she said. Without her we would not be as successful as we are. We as a group want thank the shop. We jus really appreciate the support.”
Greaney said the group does not just use fabric from donated sources.
“Many of the women use their own fabric, we call it our stash. We are all fabric alcoholics haha,” she said.
Each month the finished quilts are driven to the headquarters of Quilts For Kids in Fairless Hills, Pa.
“We are a dedicated group of women who care about this cause and we would like people to know that the national organization Quilts For Kids is completely dependent on contributions from people,” Greaney said. “In order to keep this organization going they need money.”
For more information on Quilts For Kids, visit www.quiltsforkids.org and contact Debbie Greaney at firstname.lastname@example.org, to participate in creating quilts at home.