Quilts that talk

Pictures tell a story in all languages.  Thanks to the Concord Piecemakers this selection of quilts will engage the imaginations of our little patients.

Panels and "I-Spy" quilts can be very fun for patients.  The non-medical volunteers who help to entertain the children often do not speak the local language, but pictures accompanied by sound effects and facial expressions can still communicate.  Having had the joy of participating on a Rotaplast mission I can attest to the fun and goodwill that can be shared through smiles and imitation.

I have no doubt that the quilters who created these "stories" had a smile on their face as they stitched. Thank you again to the Piecemakers of Concord, MA.

Eye candy on a rainy day

The coast of Maine is a beautiful environment on most days, but lately we've had our share of snow, ice, rain, wind......with grey skies that have seemed rather dismal.  Just when I was starting to feel eager for color and new energy I opened two bags of quilts from the Concord Piecemakers.

And OH MY GOODNESS....eye candy galore!  Who wouldn't feel uplifted by these works of art which the Concord, MA, group donated via friend Elana S.  Here is a sampling of their quilts:

 And last but not least, Wrap-A-Smile acquired this one yesterday.  What a fun combination of strings and aboriginal prints.

Thank you Elana, Pat, the Concord Piecemakers and all our quilting friends who are keeping our cleft patients wrapped in your love.  Every stitch you take contributes to their comfort.  I'm feeling grateful (and I forgot all about the grey skies!).

Youth and inspiration, a great combination!

This group of future dentists at University of New England in Maine found time to have a quilting party for Wrap-A-Smile.  And look what they accomplished! Led by young Rotarian Katelyn Pierson they produced a happy pile of quilts to be shared with our Rotaplast patients.
Katelyn is a graduate of RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awakening) and is very active with the Scarborough, Maine, Rotary Club.  As a future dentist she states "this touches my profession greatly and is helping me find the link between my long connection to Rotary and my fellow dental students."  After learning about Wrap-A-Smile and Rotaplast she presented the quilting workshop idea to her classmates and to her Rotary club which contributed financially for the materials involved.

Quoting from the January D7780 Rotary District Newsletter:

"The Scarborough Rotary would like to thank Katelyn Pierson for her leadership and dedication to Service Above Self.  Even with the demands of becoming a dentist, she …

Rotaplast in India, with QUILTS!

The current blog post by Rotaplast in India has many pictures of our quilts in action.  There are patients of a variety of ages, cuddled under WAS quilts. What a joy to see! Please share with this blog if you see a quilt that you made, or helped with. 

The historian also wrote a really nice description of how the medical teams and volunteers enjoy the process of distributing the quilts.  Thank you to ALL who continue to make this international goodwill project possible.

No empty shelves!

I enjoy being part of the constant flow of quilts that come and go from Wrap-A-Smile headquarters here in Boothbay Harbor, Maine.  As quilts come in they are labeled and briefly stored until our shelves are filled.  Then the packing fairies assemble to do their magic, getting an amazing number of quilts vacuum packed into boxes ready to ship to the medical missions.

At that point the shelves are empty but I have learned not to stress.  Within days after our last shipment departed I had surprise inquiries:  "Are you still needing quilts?"  "I've been gathering quilts for you; when can we get together?"  Truly a case of if you dream it, it will happen.

So the shelves are no longer empty thanks to Sandrea K who collected two bags of quilts from the Calico Guild in Yarmouth, Maine, and to Donna S of Buffalo, NY, who quilts for both WAS and Quilts Beyond Borders.  Thank you ladies, and your quilting friends, for keeping our shelves filled.

The first two quilts are …

Looking back and moving forward

What a wonderful year for all the children and others who were comforted by Wrap-A-Smile quilts. One thousand and twenty eight quilts were donated to us by quilters from all over the country, and all have been delivered to the volunteer medical teams of Rotaplast,Alliance for Smiles and Faces of Hope.

While we always tally the number of quilts, the real number is the number of people we help.  One thousand and twenty eight individuals, plus their families and communities, touched by the work we do. Touching souls and creating immeasurable international goodwill.  Heartfelt thanks to everyone who made this effort possible!

As a reminder of why our founder Terry Fullam was inspired to start Wrap-A-Smile, I would like to show some "before and after" photos of the children who have been treated.  These all-volunteer medical teams truly change lives.  Our quilts are the frosting on the cake.

Over 300 of this year's total came from members of the Sunshine Online Quilt Guild.

Another Rotary Quiltathon

A small but mighty group of Rotarians and quilting friends met recently at the Rotary clubhouse in Boothbay Harbor to sew for Wrap-A-Smile.  Thank you quilters who brought finished quilts as well as starting new ones.  I predict lots of happy faces as these quilts do their duty hugging children (and sometimes adults) on their way into surgery.
Over the next 6 months, Rotaplast will be taking medical teams to India, Nepal, Tanzania, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Liberia.  I will be watching their mission blogs hoping to see glimpses of these quilts.

The following 8 were made by Ann H (painter, potter, quilter...)

 And last, but not least, the front and back of an Ann H creation

Thanks everyone, it was a fun day!