Woy Woy CWA members knit ‘Angel Rugs’ for Elsie’s Retreat

Barb Galvin, 4th from left, and Woy Woy CWA members, including President Jane Bowtell 5th from left.

Members at Woy Woy CWA have been busy knitting blankets and quilts for the grand opening of Elsie’s Retreat, the new Palliative Care Unit at Gosford Hospital, with their huge second batch of ‘Angel Rugs’ delivered on February 24.

In July 2020, Woy Woy CWA responded to an appeal run by the Lions Club of Wyoming East Gosford Centennial called Elsie’s Retreat Project, requesting donations of bed size quilts and rugs for the new unit.

Since then, the club has been one of Elsie’s Retreat Project’s largest donors with at least 16 single bed sized patchwork quilts, 200 knitted and crocheted lap rugs, and 20 single bed size crocheted blankets donated to the unit.

Woy Woy CWA President Jane Bowtell said the blankets were crafted over a few months and made by some dedicated members, volunteers, and community members.

“It’s an honour and absolute privilege to be able to make single bed quilts and rugs,” Bowtell said.

“The love sewn into each quilt is indicative of the strength, commitment and support that Woy Woy CWA has been contributing to the local community for almost 90 years.

“This will be an ongoing project now and well into the future.”

Bowtell said they had donated another ten single bed knitted blankets for March and expected to donate another batch after the grand opening in late April.

Elsie’s Retreat Project committee member Barb Galvin was thankful to receive the club’s donations knowing the patients would appreciate them at the unit.

“These works of art are for each patient, and then for their relatives to be taken home at a later time,” Galvin said.

“We are also assisting Gosford Hospital by providing hand-made ‘Bereavement Bags’ to replace plastic bags presently used when a patient’s property is returned to a relative.”

Galvin was one of five applicants chosen to work as a volunteer at the new unit and is also the founder of Shirley Shuttle Cancer Outpatient Transport which helps transport clients to and from treatments.

Chair of Elsie’s Retreat Project Margaret Pearce said the Angel Rugs would be a lasting gift for the family to keep.

“We are so grateful for the generosity of the local community for supporting this much-needed unit for Central Coast residents,” Pearce said.

For more information or inquiries about Angel Rugs or Bereavement Bags, contact Barb Galvin on 0418286192.

Hayley McMahon

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