At times it seems I've become identified as
a sucker an easy mark. You have no idea some of the weird requests I get for charity knitting or causes to promote in the blog. Some of them are downright bizarre -- I'm not even sure if they're real or someone is putting me on. You might think I'm a pushover for every one that comes along, but let me just set the record straight: I'm not. Don't ask me to promote crazy malarky or pass one over on me of someone's hidden agenda that is counter to my values or beliefs. But today I'm going to talk about one I can really get behind. This relates to something close to my heart. You don't need to know why. Just believe me.
This is all about sending Valentine's Day care packages to "emancipated" foster children who are in college. You can read more about it here or here. There are a few things I am a sucker for, and one of them is sending care packages to kids in boarding school or college. Ask entire floors of kids at Walnut Hill School dorms. Ask entire casts of multiple plays at that school and at the college. Ask my daughter and her roommates.
Foster kids who have the smarts, and more importantly the gumption and the self-direction and motivation, to go to college, deserve a pat on the back as often as we can give it. They are hoping to overcome obstacles that the rest of us can barely imagine. More than likely they have no one as a parental figure. The social workers' jobs are "over," the foster parents often have ceased caring, assuming the kids had good, caring foster parents in the first place. The kids have no real place to go "home" to for school breaks, no one to call when times are tough. They don't stop being kids when they're 18, but they are often pretty much left hanging.
My daughter has two loving and supportive parents who care beyond measure about her education and her wellbeing, and it's still not always easy for her. Imagine a kid who is on his or her own at that age, trying to do it. The odds for success are slim, at best.
I was contacted by Mary Beth Temple yesterday to help spread the word about this, if I were so inclined. I am. Inclined. It's a damn short deadline, but I know I can get out a scarf before January 31st.
Now, here is an unglossed observation: It seems to me that when I talk about charity knitting, people get uncomfortable. There is a deafening silence in the comments when I do, disproportionate to other entries. Honestly, that hurts a little. I wonder what it is that turns people off and away.
But regardless, I hope you will pick up your needles and join me in knitting a red scarf for this worthy cause, even if you don't feel you have anything to comment.
For my part, I long ago promised Dave that I would test-knit his awesome scarf pattern, but I've been distracted by a bunch of other things. Now I will do it, in red, and I will kill .... one, two, three, four... birds with one stone:
1) Test-knit a scarf pattern
2) in red
3) stash yarn
4) for the project.
UPDATE: I should have put this in here the first time. Sorry 'bout that.
Einstein Bagels locations (it says all 419 of them in the country) are serving as drop-off points, by January 31, 2006. Or, it says you can mail them to:
Orphan Foundation of America/Red Scarf Project
21351 Gentry Drive, Suite 130
Sterling, VA 20166-8511
And (gulp) it says the deadline for mailing is January 28, 2006. This is REALLY a short deadline!!!
Oh, well. We'll do what we can do, right? "Bulky" is the word, is the word, is the word.... :-)