Thursday, December 10, 2009

"Sisterhood of the Traveling Hats" --Guest Post from the Hat distributor!

This post is a very special, heartwarming message from the woman who is the key to it all, our wonderful friend who has the lucky job of distributing the hats to the children in Gaza.

"Sisterhood of the Travelling Hats"

Hello everyone, I want to report that two packages arrived from our European hat makers, AND just this morning the big box arrived from the USA!!!! All the hats are SO beautiful, very well made and unique, I am both amazed and overwhelmed at the quality of the hats people made for this project. You guys are nothing short of being quite simply amazing! All the tiny baby hats, the medium sized kids hats, and a big thanks to those who made some larger sizes for teenagers, who tend to be forgotten because people tend to think of the small children and babies. So thank you to everyone for stepping up, making the hats donating the yarn, mailing your hats to Linda and a HUGE thanks to Safiyah for the blog and Linda who paid $48.00 to send the hats to me.

Now that the official “thank you” is done, I have asked Linda and Safiyah to indulge me and allow me to make this post today, addressed to all of you who participated. This is going to be difficult to write as I am filled with emotion at the moment. Here goes.

11 months, 2 weeks and 4 days ago, the date was December 27th 2008. I remember it so very well, it was the first day of the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. It was a cold dark dreary day where I live, and the day was made more dark, dreary and hopeless as the videos began rolling into the news sources. Like many of us, I expected the air strikes to end quickly, 1-2 days. Yet they continued, day and night for 22 days, unrelenting. As I watched in horror as white phosphorous sprayed down from the skies, surgically delivered by un-manned drones, I felt numb, helpless, hopeless and most of all alone.

That feeling did not go away, as there was more to witness as the bodies of children began to be pulled from the rubble of their homes, schools and mosques. I thought of my own children, and quietly thanked God that they were safe, all the while feeling guilty that they were safe, warm and with a solid roof over their heads as they slept.

I went online in a selfish effort to find others experiencing the alone-ness that I was feeling and was amazed to find millions of others just like me. I was no longer alone and isolated.

Some months later I was lucky enough to find the Knitters group supporting peace in Palestine. As the next winter approached in Gaza I thought about the millions of children that were homeless, living in tents or the rubble of their former homes. Knowing the winters in Palestine can be wet and cold, I wondered what little people like us could do to help them keep warm and to let them know that people cared. And a few weeks later the Hats for Gaza project began, again, thank you to Linda and the others who created the group. Safiyah created a great blog, and soon our little crew expanded and we began making hats to help keep the kids warm this winter.

As I sorted through all the hats today, grouping them into sizes, marvelling at the amount of work that went into creating each little hat, I began to cry. Yup I admit it, I’m pathetic. But I did so because I realised that I belonged to a new sisterhood of people who cared and wanted to do something good. So, the moral of this story is that sometimes in life, good can come from bad. We have met, made friends, worked together and we are no longer alone. Today we are a group, and today or hats have travelled from all parts of the world, to come together and be delivered to the children of Gaza. Today we have become the “Sisterhood of the Travelling Hats.”


Linda said...

Wow! I'm honored to be a part of the "Sisterhood for the Traveling Hats". Without Safiyahs help on this project, I doubt I could of gotten it off the ground at all. She keeps me focused that lady! So big hugs to you Safiyah.
I don't remember what I was doing on the first day of the war but I too thought it would only last a short while.
When it didn't, I was lucky to have the wonderful people I met on PP in ravelry who really helped to get me through the entire ordeal. I think many of us formed bonds during that period in time that will never be broken.

Many of the same friends who were there for me during Gaza are also an integral part of Hats Off to Gaza project. I feel very connected to the members I have only recently met as well. Sisters, I thank you all for your participation.

Most of all, I want to thank the one person who made this entire project feasible and that is the woman who wrote this thank you note. Without you, none of this could of happened.

Anonymous said...

These are such lovely things to say. It was wonderful to find the project on Ravelry and I was very happy to be able to help.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for organizing this group. It felt so good to do something to help and also to let the children of Gaza know that they are not forgotten, we know that they are suffering hardships and that we care so much about them,
It really means So much to me. Thank you!!!

Tracy said...

I'm also grateful for this group, and this opportunity to do something positive in the face of inconceivable violence. Our stitches matter.
Thank you!

Beeba said...

Aww, thanks Linda! I feel like you have done more, honestly... ^_^

I am also honored and totally thrilled to be a part of this wonderful cause. Our Hat Distributor is simply amazing and I think deserves an award!
By the way, I think I am one of those knitters who sent a teenager sized hat. But in the end that is a good thing, as she says. ^_^

Here's to a great year for Hats off to Gaza!

Linda said...

LOL! Yes, you did send a teenager sized hat and so did a couple of others as I recall. I didn't see the European ones in person obviously......
BTW, to all reading this, I think somebody is much too humble and should be given much more credit than she is willing to admit to! You know who!
Safiyah, really, you know I can't do this alone and you are working just as hard as me if not harder. So take the credit and run with it girl:)

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