Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Uthando Project - A Playful, Practical Knitting Initiative

This post is a little different today as it is really about Diana, my first and very dedicated test knitter, who I want to thank for all her support. She has been a knitter and overall crafty person from a young age, continuing the traditions of her mother! Diana not only knits but also does woodwork, doll houses, gardening and other crafts besides that.

At the moment, besides looking after her two beautiful grandsons, she also dedicates much of her time to the Uthando Project, which I would like to highlight today. Pictured below are a few of the beautiful dolls she has made for this project:



The Uthando Project makes African dolls for children in Kwazulu-Natal, which home to a quarter of South Africa's population. Two in every three of them live in poverty and 1.5 million are younger than my two children in a country that has been deeply affected by the AIDS and HIV epidemic. Against this backdrop, the Uthando Project focuses on enabling these disadvantaged children to embellish their expressive play - which is an important medium for developing their physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual selves. The African-style dolls are made by volunteers all over the world (knitted or sewn) and then distrbuted throughout Kwazulu-Natal. 

The Uthando Project, which means 'love' in the local language, is looking for more people to make the dolls and also to provide funds for additional psycho-social training in Kwazulu-Natal. For more information on the project, visit their website - http://www.uthandoproject.org/ or buy their beautiful book "100 Dolls Countless Hearts" from the website, which Diana also contributed to.

Next post I'm hoping to show you my finished beanie and perhaps a bit more on the vest I'm making and Diana is testing. If you would also be interested in testing from time to time A Passionate Yarn patterns, contact me here. In the meantime, I hope you have a very pleasant and reflective ANZAC day.

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