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‘We’re so fortunate here’: P.E.I. woman knits for first time in 50 years to donate mittens to Ukrainians

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SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. — For the primary time in practically 50 years Frances Doyle picked up a ball of yarn and a pair of needles and began to knit.

Now her creations are headed to Ukraine the place they are going to assist preserve individuals heat by way of the unsure winter forward confronted by that nation.

Motivated by a neighbour, Doyle, 89, hopped again into the knitting craft earlier this 12 months. She completed one pair of mittens, then one other and one other.

“I simply began doing it for a pastime,” she mentioned. “One thing to fill within the hours after I wasn’t enjoying playing cards or doing one thing.”

By the top of November, the Summerside lady had stockpiled 40 pairs.

Regardless of the time spent away from the craft, leaping again into knitting got here straightforward to Doyle. Capable of end a pair of mittens per day, it was as if she had by no means paused.

When Doyle began on her mittens, she was not knitting with any goal in thoughts. Whereas listening to the information, although, it occurred to her that she may use her passion to assist individuals in want.

“We’re so lucky right here,” she mentioned. “We complain in regards to the least little issues.”

Particularly, it was seeing footage of Ukrainians and the continuing conflict in that nation that drove her to need to assist households there.

“These moms which are wandering about, carrying a toddler of their arms, and one other one by the hand, it regarded so unhappy,” mentioned Doyle. “I’ve seen them put on heavy coats, so I do know it’s a chilly local weather there. I used to be joyful to have the ability to ship them.”

With the 40 pairs full, Doyle’s daughter linked with the charity Angels of Prince Edward Island and organized for the mittens to be despatched with their subsequent cargo to Ukraine.

The group, mentioned Christine Zareck with Angels of P.E.I., goals to ship cash and donations to Ukraine to assist residents throughout the conflict.

After receiving the donation of mittens, Zareck posted it to her Fb, shocked by the response.

“Every time I do one thing with anyone who has performed a particular donation or one thing, I all the time submit it on Fb,” she mentioned. “Hers went viral.”

In a single group, the submit obtained practically 900 likes and virtually 100 feedback as of mid-December.

For Zareck, it’s “wonderful” to see Islanders doing their half to assist out, irrespective of how giant or small of an effort.

“What I skilled working this charity has been an enormous blessing,” she mentioned. “I can’t start to let you know how considerate individuals have been throughout this conflict, and proceed to be.”

Serving to out

All through her life, Doyle has helped the group in little methods – together with organizing card events, serving to put together receptions following funerals or volunteering at her church.

Since getting back into the hobby of knitting, Frances Doyle has donated much of her work to various causes. – Kristin Gardiner
Since getting again into the passion of knitting, Frances Doyle has donated a lot of her work to numerous causes. – Kristin Gardiner

Till sending mittens to Ukraine, although, she had by no means donated her work to a trigger.

“It was only a spur-of-the-moment factor,” mentioned Doyle.

She is simply glad to have helped in some small means, she added.

“It was very rewarding to assume that somebody so far-off will likely be carrying my mittens.”

Although 40 mittens have been sent overseas, Frances Doyle says she is not finished making mittens altogether. Speaking to SaltWire Network in early December, Doyle was hard at work on another pair. She plans to donate more mittens this time next year but has yet to decide where these will go. – Kristin Gardiner
Though 40 mittens have been despatched abroad, Frances Doyle says she just isn’t completed making mittens altogether. Chatting with SaltWire Community in early December, Doyle was onerous at work on one other pair. She plans to donate extra mittens this time subsequent 12 months however has but to determine the place these will go. – Kristin Gardiner

Nonetheless, the cargo was not her solely latest donation, nor will or not it’s the final. Lately, she knitted dishcloths and despatched them to some Charlottetown charities to provide to ladies in want.

Doyle has already begun making much more mittens – knitting a teal pair at her eating desk as she spoke to SaltWire Community in early December.

Though she solely has a few pairs accomplished to date, she already has plans for an additional donation.

“Subsequent 12 months, I’ll do it for one thing, perhaps the identical factor, perhaps not,” mentioned Doyle. “It’ll all rely.”


Kristin Gardiner is a reporter with the SaltWire Community in Prince Edward Island. She might be reached by electronic mail at [email protected] and adopted on Twitter @KristinGardiner.



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