Eastside Business Journal Good Deeds

Stitches from the Heart: Covenant Shores’ residents donate handmade baby items to those in need

Stitches from the Heart members knit and crochet blankets, baby booties and other items to donate to Neighborhood Care Clinic in Seattle and Eastside Baby Corner in Issaquah.
Photo courtesy of Debbie Friend Haynes

Ask any parent and they can tell you: babies require a lot of stuff. In addition to bottles and diapers, there are booties, sweaters and blankets – just to name a few things.  Fortunately for new parents who may struggle in providing basic necessities to their children, there is a group of retirees willing to lend a hand.

Stitches from the Heart, a club comprised of residents at Covenant Shores, a faith-based, not-for-profit, continuing care retirement community administered by Covenant Retirement Communities, handcrafts one-of-a-kind baby hats, booties, sweaters and blankets for families in need.

Baby items are made throughout the year, and then divided up in September and January and taken to two donation sites: Neighborhood Care Clinic in Seattle and Eastside Baby Corner in Issaquah. Last year, club members handmade and donated 706 booties, blankets and other baby items. Since the club began in 2006, more than 2,300 items have been donated to these agencies that care for low-income families.

“The residents at Covenant Shores are very dedicated in their efforts to help individuals in the community who are struggling,” says Bruce Erickson, Executive Director of Covenant Shores. “The Stitches from the Heart club is a long-standing tradition here, and it is a great example of how active our residents are in community outreach.”

Embracing crafters who knit, crochet and quilt, resident Joyce Hedges, 84, started the club when she moved to the senior living community in 2006. It was an activity she has participated in since 2001, and believed like-minded individuals at Covenant Shores would also appreciate.

“It’s a lot of fun and is pleasant to do,” Hedges says. “We don’t all have grandchildren we can knit for anymore, so this is an outlet for what we enjoy doing.”

Hedges says that there are about a dozen dedicated ladies who are extremely qualified in their craft that are active participants in the club, but everyone is willing to help someone new to the knit one, purl two concepts.

“We help each other,” Hedges says. “Most of the work is done at home, and showing up to the meetings isn’t a requirement. When we get together it is to share patterns and ideas and we make a lot of noise and have fun.”

Most of the washable acrylic and nylon yarn used by Stitches from the Heart is donated from family members of knitters who have passed away. It is a generous gift that continues to give, she says.

For more information about Covenant Shores, please visit, or call 877-591-0465.

About Covenant Shores
Covenant Shores, a faith-based, not-for-profit, continuing care retirement community, is located at 9150 Fortuna Drive, Mercer Island, Wash. It is administered by Covenant Retirement Communities, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit senior services providers. Covenant Retirement Communities serves 5,000 residents at 12 retirement communities nationwide and is a ministry of the Evangelical Covenant Church. For more information on Covenant Shores, call 877–385-8613 or visit

Bellevue Business Journal Good Deeds

Earl Thomas III Guardian Angel Foundation Funds Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission Search and Rescue Blankets

In the name of its Winter Coverage community outreach program, the Earl Thomas III Guardian Angel Foundation made a $15,000 donation to provide 2,100 blankets for Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission.

The Mission’s supply of specialized wool rescue blankets that cover the body head-to-toe, are biodegradable and offer warmth, even when wet, had been depleted for four weeks.

Search and Rescue vans distribute 600 wool rescue blankets each week to those on the street. The last one-night count in January 2015 found 3,772 of unsheltered individuals in King County alone. For many, the blankets separate life from death and are also accompanied with friendly conversation, hot cocoa, supplies and an invitation back to the shelter for a warm bed.
“The Guardian Angel Foundation’s gift will not only enable thousands of unsheltered individuals to survive cold nights, but also help individuals forge a relationship with our Search and Rescue team that provides a crucial point of contact when these individuals are ready to take steps in rebuilding their lives,” said Linda Lynch, the Mission’s director of gift in kind.
The mission of the Earl Thomas III Guardian Angel Foundation is to provide resources and assistance to children and families in need. For more information, please visit