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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Knit Wits

In Dearborn, Michigan, The Times-Herald reports today that local school children under the direction of teacher, Julie Wieleba-Milkie, have come together at recess and free time to make winter scarfs for the homeless. They call their social justice project “Knit Wits.” Knit Wits is comprised primarily of students at Sacred Heart School in Dearborn, MI. “We’re doing this all winter,” said Ms. Wieleba-Milkie, director of religious education.

Robbie Grasinski, a 10-year-old fifth grader, is a first-time knitter, and said using the loom is pretty easy. “It sounded like fun and I just like to make stuff,” Grasinski said. He hasn’t set a specific goal for himself, and said he is just going to see how many scarves he can make. He said it was important to make scarves for the homeless “because they’re cold out in the winter and you want them to be as warm as possible.”

Arwa Saleem, a 12-year-old seventh grader was curious about Knit Wits, so she decided to give it a try during a cold recess. She has been working on her first scarf at home in her spare time while watching television or listening to music. “The homeless get really cold and they need a lot of donations and a lot of people really can’t give it to them right now, so giving them the scarves really helps,” Saleem said.

Her friend, 12-year-old seventh grader Maddie Kaplan, who joined Knit Wits with her, had knitted the traditional way with knitting needles with her grandmother, and finds winding yarn around the loom and pulling the loops over the pegs with a crochet hook much easier.

“I think it’s really cool because you can do something that you like to do and something also that’s really helpful for people in need,” Kaplan said. “It’s something good for them, even if it’s just making one small scarf. You’re keeping them warm no matter what.”

Yarn, craft looms, crochet hooks and discount coupons to local craft stores may be donated to Sacred Heart Parish, 22430 Michigan Ave. in Dearborn. For more information or to become a local Knit Wit, contact Julie Wieleba-Milkie via email at
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