BY AMANDA MOSES
Vandalia’s Sensational Seniors are crocheting love and warmth one hat at a time as they venture to donate 116 handmade items to children at Urban Strategies Head-start (located at 1091 Sutter Ave). Members of the Vandalia Senior Center meet weekly under the guidance of Director, Simone Dundas, and have worked for several years to transform their hobby into a humanitarian effort.
In light of the bitter cold season, the seniors thought that by crocheting tiny hats and scarves they could help children who are in dire need of these winter accessories. Like their namesake, this group of spectacular women have dedicated hours of their time crafting hats,scarves, and even blankets to those that need it the most. Last year, the group of seniors distributed over 81 blankets to A Sister’s Faith Crochet Project, a non-profit organization whose mission is to bring these items to cancer patients.
On February 4th, two members from Vandalia’s Sensational Seniors (Phyllis Hall and Renee Spencer) carried two large sacks over-flowing with beautifully crocheted winter accessories to Urban Strategies Headstart.
These two seniors happily walked throughout the school under the direction of staff member Dawn Mackle, where they stopped by over eight classrooms providing the children with their new winter attire.
Yelps of glee and giggles emanated from each child as they excitedly peered into the sack of crocheted items. The students tried on their hats (some even came with a matching hat for a parent) and smiled from ear to ear as they discerned which colors they liked the most. Whether the items were given to the Terrific Twos, the Dancing Dino three-year-olds, or the Early Bird four-year-olds each class section was beyond ecstatic and grateful to receive their winter gifts.
The classroom teachers and students offered large cards in which they proclaimed their ever-lasting appreciation for Vandalia’s Sensational Seniors’ gracious do-nations. One class wrote: “Hats to warm our hearts. Thank you for sharing your love. We appreciate it.” In addition, the students referred to the seniors as grandmothers when discussing their new items to their parents.
Many of the parents were confused when the children said that their grandmothers gave them hats and scarves, but once the teachers explained the donation, they were all happy and grateful,” said Urban Strategies staff member, Dawn Mackle.
The Vandalia Sensational Seniors often interweave love and kindness into everything they do, so if you would like to donate yarn to the Vandalia Center, please contact 718-272-3905 or visit them at 47 Vandalia Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11239.
Photos by Amanda Moses