Thanks to chief organizer, Linda Robbins, PHEc, and a dedicated team of cutters, sewers/sergers, sorters/packers and distributors, Ottawa HEA has surpassed its annual fleece hat production - despite COVID.
The team includes Carol Badenoch, Ellen Boynton, Luba Brown, Cathy Enright, Mary Johnston, Elizabeth Lee, Judy Leeson, Linda Robbins, Maxine Robertson, Audrey Schreyer, Lynn Stewart, Susan Thorne and Ellie Topp.
The production cycle started in mid-July. Previous clients (Centre507, Interval House, Cornerstone, the Snowsuit Fund and the Ottawa Mission) were contacted to help estimate demand for hats in 2021/22. The Ottawa Mission declined participation due to Covid protocols. Shepard's of Good Hope was added in place of the Mission. Clients indicated need by size and gender or gender-neutral. (Child small, medium, large; Adult small, and medium). The estimates formed the basis of acquisitions of fleece. Donations from Carol Badenoch, Cathy Enright and Mary Johnston, were augmented with "on-sale" purchases from Fabricland and EcoEquitable.
By mid-September, cutters had prepared about 619 hats (up from 590 in 2020). Cut hats were made available for an in-person Hat Sewing Day on Sept. 28th at Bells Corners United Church, with required vaccination, physical distancing and safety protocols in place.
The volunteers produced an amazing 619 hats in just over 5 hours, with more to come from members working from home.
The goal is to have all hats completed by October 19, 2021, sorted/distributed to primary clients by early November. A secondary list of clients has been identified and remaining hats will be distributed to them before the snow flies.
The Ontario Home Economics Association, a self-regulating body of professional Home Economists, promotes high professional standards among its members so that they may assist families and individuals to achieve and maintain a desirable quality of life.