Our first Bee in the new year was a beautiful day! When AZ Blankets 4 Kids volunteers arrived early to help set up, they were greeted by a smiling team of parking professionals who escorted us to our parking spots, then carted us to the community room. Special thanks to those gentlemen who started our day so sweetly.
We had a full house again, with 108 volunteers in attendance. This is always a big bee for us, but it never gets old to see so many people working together to do so much good! This particular bee is also famous for the hospitality, sweet treats, and always impressive potluck luncheon. All of this was provided by the generous volunteers at Weavers Needle. They kept us well fed, caffeinated, and hydrated, and we converted that sustenance into blankets for our kids.
The weather was gorgeous, so our team of sprayers kept busy outside and sent us away with tons of blankets ready to be machine-quilted or hand tied. We don’t always have an opportunity to spray at our bees, so these ladies got our season off to a smashing start!
AZ Blankets 4 Kids President, Kelli Nemec, shared a beautiful letter we received from blanket recipient agency, Arizonans for Children. This agency serves our community by helping abused, neglected,and abandoned children. The letter shared details of their annual holiday party, held on December 15. Nearly 1,000 people attended the party, including 565 foster children, from ages 2 months to 18 years. Nearly all the gift bags for the children contained a blanket, and most of those came from AZ Blankets 4 Kids. Arizonans for Children President, Kaye McCarthy, shares this at the end of her letter.
Without your donations, ideas and volunteer commitment, the 985 attendees would not have been able to celebrate all together at this one festive venue. That common thread, though sad as it sounds, especially at the holiday season, is that everyone who attended the party is linked through the foster care system. At a tough time of year when foster children miss their families, you brought them together and made the children smile — thank you for your generous spirit and your gift of sharing. At present time there are over 15,000 children in foster care in Arizona. May hope and peace fill your heart as you reflect on the foster children we serve.
This is exactly why we do what we do. It’s such an honor and a privilege to serve at events like this. I spent some time watching visitors walk by and pop their heads in the room to see what was going on. Every single visitor, with eyes wide and jaws dropped, asked about what was going on. Our bees are aptly named, because they witnessed a huge room filled with 108 people all abuzz, with 50 whirring sewing machines, blanket filled table after table, and voices joined in fellowship, laughter, and love.
Thanks so much to all our friends at Weavers Needle, for making their 12th annual bee with us so perfect. Special thanks to Sharon Lowenberg for leading this brigade of goodness! There were 20 blankets donated at the door and an astounding 104 blankets completed at the bee!