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Women working hand in glove for local Community Living

Published on

Troy Shantz

A group of Sarnia retirees has turned a sewing hobby into a venture that’s making a big difference in the community.

4Friends Plus meets weekly to repurpose old sweaters into mittens that they sell for $25 a pair.

So far they’ve raised a cool $10,000 – money that helped purchase a new van for Community Living Sarnia Lambton.

The group was formed by Karen King, Laurie Hardy, Wilma Mahar and Arlene Duckert following their retirement in 2012.

It got started with a $1,000 grant from the Awesome Foundation, which was used to buy materials and wool sweaters from local thrift shops.

The wool sweaters they find are shrunk, cut and sewn into mittens and then lined with fleece.

They’re producing about 100 pair a year and continue to raise money for Community Living.

Last year, Marion Burr and Shirley Vanderwielen joined the team, prompting a name change from “4Friends” to “4Friends Plus.”

“It also has been really nice to have that time of camaraderie, where we sit and we talk to each other,” Duckert of the weekly meet-ups.

“We’ve really leaned on each other with various things that have gone on in our life over that past four years.”

The mittens are available to be purchased at One Tooth as well as Community Living’s offices on Exmouth Street.


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