I first learned about Tikkun Olam through http://knittingforcharity.org a website I check frequently for projects I can assist through writing or through knitting/crocheting. Its so simple yet so meaningful to do an act of kindness. By joining in a project like Tikkun Olam or knitting for Cast off Chemo! we knit people together.
You can read the article at Knitting for Charity by Nicole Haschke here: http://www.knittingforcharity.org/tikkun_olam_nicaragua_charity_knitting_for_a_desperately_nee.html#more. Her passion for this charity of course piqued my interest so I investigated the Ravelry group which you can find here: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/tikkun-olam-nicaragua. (If you have any interest in fiber arts at all, Ravelry is a great place to make connections) The purpose of the Ravelry group is to support the Tikkun Olam Nicaragua medical missions group by creating hand made shawls for the petite Nicaraguan women who live in the very remote pueblos where the team visits.
Tikkun Olam Nicaragua was founded by Patresha Mendel in 2011. It is a 501 (3) (c) recognized charitable organization. I will quote from the Tikkun Olam Nicaragua website "Tikkun Olam Nicaragua is a dedicated volunteer inter-faith medical team. Our mission is to help repair the world, one day at a time. Each team member not only donates their valuable professional time to pursue the goals of our organization, but they also raise funds and donate money themselves to make each mission trip a reality. Preparing for a medical mission trip is exciting and team members enlist the support of friends and family to help make a difference in the world." http://www.tikkunolamnicaragua.com/#!who-we-are/c20r9 There's no question that what they do requires true dedication, time, and expertise. Patresha or TreshaA2 as she's known on Ravelry recognizes the power of a hand made gift. Tresha is quoted "We are an inter-faith medical mission team that travels annual to the rural mountains of Nicaragua to set up mobile clinics. We treat over 1,000 patients in four days and we prescribe over 3,500 prescriptions. We home base at an orphanage in Jinotega and we spend our evenings after clinic, playing with the children. We also bring much needed supplies to the orphanage and we have also set up food stations for the very needy in the pueblos. This year, we are hoping to bring shawls to the poor in the very remote areas we visit. Picture someone living in a dirt floor shack, with barely food to eat, let alone proper clothing’ or shoes, living on less than $1 a day. The shawls that we are knitting will be hand delivered by our team of medical professionals -- I wish you could see the faces of the women as we put them on their shoulders! So, I plan on taking photos of the women receiving your hand knitted treasures. Believe me, they will be treasured for a very very long time. Muchisimas gracias to all of you who have stepped forward to help our cause!!" http://www.ravelry.com/discuss/tikkun-olam-nicaragua/2876213/1-25
There's something quite amazing about giving to a cause when you know the people receiving the gift have so little. It does not seem like a lot to create a small shawl but truly sending love in the form of a shawl is simply the best feeling. To give you some idea you can see pictures of the trips the team from Tikkun Olam Nicaraga have taken on their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.312465902105763.80677.307120899306930&type=3 Makes you smile just looking at the faces of the people who were given the shawls hand made by those in the Tikkun Olam Nicaragua Ravelry Group (to which I now belong) So the question is how can you help? First join Ravelry! Then join the Tikkun Olam Nicaragua Ravelry group here: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/tikkun-olam-nicaragua. Then get knitting, crocheting or looming! One of the shawls that I get most compliments on was made on a Knifty Knitter loom. Which you can find at many arts and craft stores. All the instructions necessary as well as the mailing address are located on the Ravelry group's page. (please also follow the color recommendations!)
Those who do this kind of medical missions do so much more than just bring medicine they bring hope. I believe that any shawl sent to Tikkun Olam Nicaragua will be so much appreciated. I don't believe there are words to express in any language the power of hope! Please join this great group of crafters :) I have!
**Opinions expressed on blogs about which I write are the opinion of the blog authors and DO NOT necessarily reflect my own opinion.