There is no denying this year has been extreme, bleak and challenging for everyone and in truth there were times earlier on when we struggled to see Woolly Hugs past families, lockdowns, work, health worries. Everyone has so much on their plate, we worried too that Woolly Hugs as a community and charity would struggle to stay afloat.
But out of this arise the Great Woolly crew, and we are BLOWN AWAY!! Your dedication and enthusiasm despite the pandemic is extraordinary, unstoppable and a true force of good, We’ve gained such strength and comfort from you all! We know many crafters have said that working on projects helped them enormously during lockdown and we are so glad of this. The response and enthusiasm to all our projects has been undimmed, the spirit, compassion, generosity, love and care, truly it feels boundless. Crafters and donors what you do is incredibly special and precious, giving woolly warmth comfort to others, especially in this dreadful year. Even Post Office trips in masks didn’t deter the Crew! Honestly we are blessed to know you all!
Just incredible. Saying thank you just doesn’t seem enough, but the most enormous thanks to everyone. There have been an enormous number of positives this year.
2020 saw the continuation of our Ongoing projects with new ones added in. From here in the UK to as far away as Syria and Greece children and families feeling love, warmth, support and comfort through our Refugee Project, Little Hugs, Kinship Hugs, Bees Blankets and Candy’s Hugs. Our Little Hug project (blankets for very sick children at The Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow, the Great North Children’s Hospital in Newcastle, teens in GOSH and Royal Manchester Hospital for Children) enters its ninth year, still going as strong as ever, folk are amazingly generous, thank you. Love to all the families and children who have received this year. Thinking too of all the families in Glasgow and the surrounds who have received our Angel Hugs and Teds incredibly bleak and devastating times. Love in every stitch we say and it really is true. Loved and looked after is our aim.
A Snug for Christmas 2020 was for Looked after children (in the foster care system) in the Yorkshire area So many beautiful blankets, we exceeded our target which was epic, thank you so so much. All going to wonderful looked after children – our aim is to give them something unique and permanent which they can take with them wherever they are. A Snug for Christmas 2021 will definitely go ahead, region to be confirmed, thank you so much.
Our Chernobyl Project 2020. It was no surprise but still devastating to learn that it would not be possible for the ‘Chernobyl’ children to visit the UK for respite holidays in 2020, that is all except for one group who visited Portsmouth and had planned all along to come in March. It was an absolute joy, even more so now looking back to meet them and give them their blankets. This photo now feels such a celebration, even more so!
Our target for 2020 had been 175 Chernob blankets, most of which are in secure storage waiting for it to be possible to get to the children. Sadly 2021 is up in the air at the moment, understandably, these children are already more vulnerable health wise. It just may not be possible to bring them over, or for Link organisers to even get over there. We have had to make the decision to put our Chernobyl 2021 project on ice. It is sad for sure but needs to be. We will use this year’s blankets first as soon as poss, and hopefully later in the year we will have a better idea. The project will be back, we are just not sure when. We had plans too to deliver Billie’s Blankets to the Children’s Cancer Hospital in Minsk this winter, but this too is on hold. It will happen.
Having made the decision that our Refugee Project would focus on blankets and blanket squares we were so pleased to be able to help with far more in the rallying call from Choose Love in September, prompted by the fire that had been raging in the Moria refugee camp in Greece. Phase one saw an urgent request for soap, toothpaste, shampoo, shower gel, deodorant and nappies and the response we got from you was incredible. Such an outpouring of love, thank you! Phase two saw us collecting refugee project blankets and hats, again in such a short turn around the response was truly astonishing. Thank you!
Again all hail the incredible Construction Crew, it hasn’t been such a busy year due to Covid, but we have still put calls out for help and folk literally fall over themselves, it is amazing! Thank you! Thanks too to the wonderful Square Squad who are utterly fabulous at quickly and beautifully making squares for special Little Hugs/Kinships etc. We put up our request and we are never surprised at the SPEED of the replies! Thank you everyone. If anyone would like more info about either group, just shout, we have separate Facebook groups so not to get lost on the main Page!
And two wonderful craft sales! Both held during lockdowns, we didn’t anticipate that, but both hugely successful, we are so grateful to all crafters and buyers alike. We are always stunned by the talent in our ranks, we know the woolly side but these sales get us to see another side! Amazing
We’ve worked hard all year supporting bereaved Mumsnet families, it is an honour to do so, and we hope that through our love they will feel some comfort. Thank you so much to all crafters and donors alike, what you do is amazing.We say our Woolly Hugs are a tribute and a tangible sign of a life filled with love. We know the recipient families love them. The photo albums are all to be found here on our website under Mumsnet Blankets. In 2020 we crafted and sent to..
One of the absolute highlights for this year has been the advent of our social Facebook page, born from adversity, we wanted to have a safe, happy, supportive and chatty space for our folk at the start of the first lockdown. We couldn’t be happier with how it has worked. It’s a fabulous place to be, all we hoped for and more! Thank you so much to our seven wonderful admins without whom it wouldn’t be! It’s called the Woolly Pack, and if you’d like to join, please message us.
So we look forward to 2021 with hope and reassurance that the Woolly Hugs community are by our side.
Please keep safe and well in these difficult times.
Sending the most enormous love from us both, G&G xxx