This discussion aims to give you an up-close and personal look at what happens on opening days at the Knit-a-Square barn.  I'm a partially-sighted volunteer who who attends with my guide dog Tango and my driver Bongi, who has also become a keen volunteer.  While everyone else opens parcels, sorts squares and packs items ready for distribution, I listen and take mental notes so I can pass on something of the atmosphere on the ground.  Enjoy!

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Thanks dear Leanne, it was great to see you again yesterday and chat about things.  We are so grateful for all the work Sandy and Andrea are doing on resurrecting and renewing the website.  It started out with drastic news that most of the backups were irretrievable, but with determination and a great deal of hard work, that aspect has miraculously come right.  

We will miss you on 28th August, dear Leanne, but will keep you in our prayers for a successful outcome to the cataract surgery and look forward to seeing you again in September !

Love and hugs to all xoxoxoxo

Lovely report Leanne! Good to hear that lots more squares are now making their way through and blankets are again filling up the shelves.

Best wishes to you for your operation, my Mum has had cataracts done on both her eyes and she said the actual surgery part was easy, it was just all the drops after that were a bit of a bother.

Leanne, thank you once again for inviting us into the KASbarn for a look around.  You always bring it to life for us with your beautiful words and we appreciate it.  I wish you the best with your surgery and will keep you in my prayers.

Happy Birthday dear Ronda!  It's wonderful to know you are getting your strength back and able to carry on oversering your wonderful work.

Thank you to all those who help out on opening and distribution days to complete our mission of warming the children and adding a tiny bright spot to their lives ... xo

Thank you for your regular updates of the 'goings on' at the Barn Leanne. We will all keep you in our hearts for your eye operation to go smoothly with a successful outcome!

Dear Leanne sending you many positive thoughts for the operation. Also belated Happy Birthday to Ronda!

So glad to hear that the shelves are filling up again!

Thank you for your update, Leanne. Hope all goes well with your operation.  xo

Thank you Leanne, and best wishes for your surgery

A belated happy Birthday to Ronda !  The cake looked delicious.

To Leanne thank you, and every success for your operation. You will be in our thoughts and looking forward to your return.

Thank you Leanne and best wishes for successful cataract surgery.

Thanks for the news Leanne.  Sending prayers your way for a successful surgery and quick recovery.

Thank you to everyone who sent good wishes and prayers for my surgery. The operation went well and the cataract was successfully removed. As a result, the shadow that obscured the left of my visual field has gone, allowing in more light and making me feel safer as I move around. Unfortunately, there could be no improvement in the quality of my sight because of the retinal deterioration but I'm glad for what change there has been.

My daughter Lauren is staying with me at the moment so she joined Bongi and I for opening day yesterday. She said the experience was "cool"! We thrust her into the midst of things by stationing her at the table opposite Estelle and letting her sort squares. She enjoyed combining squares of complimentary colours and was able to produce a couple of complete blanket packs, along with several incomplete piles of bigger or smaller squares.

The volunteers were fully occupied with opening boxes from the British International Prep School in order to get through the 7000-square delivery received last week. We've been amazed by the productivity of certain schools lately. Before this donation, we had another 7000-square donation from St Stithians, which means the volunteers have been busy with school squares for a full month! They are looking forward to some variety now, especially in the form of themed squares from our forum members!

We have put together a PDF booklet outlining how Knit-a-Square runs its operation so that knitters further afield in South Africa can set up satellite groups. This is because we often get inquiries from local knitters and crocheters who want to contribute squares but are reluctant to mail them. Since the need for blankets is countrywide, it stands to reason that they could produce blankets for their own communities, following the same system we use in Johannesburg. The satellite groups will be funded by their own members, just as Ronda and her helpers funded the establishment of Knit-a-Square in the early days. In every other respect, though, they will be part of our community, sharing their journey with us and receiving guidance and encouragement along the way.

The layout and production of the PDF booklet was generously undertaken by Mpact Recycling as an extension of their Mandela Day project. You will remember that Mpact ran a distribution on Mandela Day, run by members of their staff. We are very grateful for their support and look forward to a mutually satisfying relationship in the future.

From a warm Johannesburg where the hibiscus, plumbago and arum lilies are bursting into bloom, happy knitting everyone!

So good to hear you are pleased with the results of the surgery and that it has returned you to the barn for opening days, followed by a report - which we all enjoy reading! Also, the PDF booklet encouraging people to set up satellite groups is an excellent development for KAS.



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