The Range News is Maleny's premium Weekly Newspaper delivered each Friday
to the People of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland from Glasshouse to
Kenilworth and west to Peachester.

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Craft Group to donate
gifts to sick children

Since July, a group of local women have found that a weekly gathering, a cuppa and a common interest can bring amazing results for sick children.

The group of about 40 women create colourful rugs and gifts for children of the cancer ward at Brisbane’s Wesley Hospital.  The group has now crafted more than 30 rugs for donation to the hospital, as well as caps, bed socks and toys for the children.

With the close of winter, the women finished their meetings this week, but vowed to return to work next year.  Pat Bourke, who hosts the meetings at her home in Maleny, said the group started when one of the members, Jacqueline McLean, began travelling to the Wesley Hospital for her own treatment.  Jacqueline spoke to a sister at the Wesley who said the hospital and children needed colourful rugs to cheer up the ward.

After a letter was published in The Range Newsand a donation box was installed at the library the group was established.  Mrs Bourke said the group received two full bags of wool, through community donations to the box in the library.  Mrs Bourke said after attempting to knit the rugs, the women realised it would be an expensive and time-consuming option, and wrote to Spotlight’s head office to ask for support.

Spotlight donated a $100 voucher, which was used to purchase polar fleece; a lightweight, warm fabric.  Each rug has since been bound or crocheted, marked small or large and is now ready for donation.  Mrs Bourke said each child in the ward would receive a large bag with a rug, cap, socks and toys included.  The rugs would belong to each child for the duration of their stay, after which they would be returned to the hospital.  The caps, bed socks and toys would remain the property of the child.

Mrs Bourke said the toys would provide security for the children while they were having treatment. “When held correctly, the toys will also help to keep the children’s hands flat for the nurses to give treatment,” she said.  Mrs Bourke said most of the women in the group were associated with someone with cancer in some way.  She said the group was grateful for the generous help and donations from community members, particularly the staff at Bushman’s Warehouse.

“Its amazing what a group of people in a business can do when they get together.”  “It’s outstanding what they have done,” she said. Mrs Bourke said the meetings had benefited both the children and the group themselves.

“It should add something to the children’s quality of life while they are there, and we feel we have got a lot out of this ourselves.”  “We hope people in other places might think about what they can do for another institution,” she said.

Some of the 40 members of the group which creates colourful rugs
and gifts for children of the cancer ward at Brisbane’s Wesley Hospital.

Our thanks once again to Cameron & Tanya Outridge
of the Range News Newspaper for this story.