Now Cath is a very special lady to The Give A Duck Foundation, read on to find out why…
“When I retired in May 2009 I had decided I wanted to do voluntary work but something that felt ‘right’, so when I saw a position advertised for a weekend bookings secretary at the local community hall, I decided to apply. This was right up my street, I could use my admin skills, meet people and chat. After a short time settling into the role I realised that the Hall had no knitting group and so Bizzi Hands was born. We started with just six members but now regularly have 24 attending (that was before lockdown).
A friend who was one of the original members told me that a group had been set up locally by a Paramedic, to knit preemie baby outfits and ambulance packs, she had joined so I asked her if she would introduce me. That’s when I first became a member of Blue Light Babies.
When Blue Light Babies were approached by the RVI at Newcastle in July 2017 to see if we could produce outfits for their Chemo Ducks and I saw the duck for the first time my heart just melted, I was in love with this little stuffed toy but it’s what he/she means to the children and their families who are possibly going through the worst time in their lives. I was on board, although not professional pattern writers Jo (Founder of BLB) and I started to create our own patterns. The doll patterns just did not fit (ducks neck too wide) and Teddy and Preemie patterns were just not quite right. As you will know the duck is a funny shape so I/we spent many hours collaborating, writing, pulling out, reworking until we had the right measurements.
Jo asked me to join the admin team within Blue Light Babies, with the role and responsibility of coordinating the outfits for Chemo Duck.
In July 2019 I had to undergo brain surgery and spent 10 weeks in hospital. The first thing Jo did was to put a hook and some wool in my hands and just said, “try and hook something for Chemo Duck”. At first I found it very difficult to concentrate and could only do a few stitches but I persevered and after a few weeks managed to produce a jumper.
Eventually after recuperation I was able to take on the role and responsibility again of all the duck outfits, sorting, bagging and boxing them for distribution. When The Give A Duck Foundation first approached us in 2020 we were excited and honoured that our outfits would be going countrywide and be really appreciated not just by the children but all the health staff and parents as well.
To reach out to members who are lonely, in need of friendship, have health issues, this woolly family binds us altogether. The benefits to myself and the members of Blue Light Babies is beyond words, using your skills, however experienced you are, in creating and donating to those in need, to see photographs of the children’s smiling response to the outfits is heartwarming.
I thank the day that Blue Light Babies came into my life, for giving me a purpose and for becoming the ‘Duck Lady’.
With grateful thanks also to The Give A Duck Foundation, without this charity there would be no Chemo Ducks to use as a teaching aid to support the children and their siblings.” – Cath aka ‘Duck Lady’ at Blue Light Babies
🌟 Inspired? Find out how you get help Give A Duck today!
To create duck outfits like Cath please join the Blue Light Babies group!