Clubs and Organizations
June 26, 2015
Many children have their favorite item of comfort they can't bear to part with; sometimes it's a favorite stuffed animal, a pacifier or a blanket. Oftentimes, a blanket gives them the most comfort, and a special group of women at Parkway Place, a nonprofit senior living community, has embraced the idea of providing comfort to people of all ages by making quilts and donating them. Each Tuesday without fail, six residents have gathered together to bring joy to others. These women have hearts for giving back and have chosen a unique approach to meeting the needs of their fellow residents, as well as adults and children across Houston. They hand-make about 250 beautiful lap quilts a year for a variety of people residents who are facing illness and have entered into skilled nursing at Parkway Place or a hospital, children at Child Advocates, a nonprofit organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of child abuse, and kids recovering from surgery at Texas Children's Hospital. The ladies choose a variety of fabrics to appeal to people of all ages and dedicate time outside of their weekly meetings to ensure that these projects are completed with the highest of quality. They are symbols of their care and dedication to serve others.
"Our main purpose is to give quilts away, and that gives me a true sense of fulfillment," said resident Jane Wulf. "I've been at Parkway Place 12 years now and became a part of the group as soon as I heard about it. Working on these quilts together has allowed our group to become very close, keeps us active and gives us a sense of purpose."
Wulf has been creating with her hands since she was a child. She helped her mom quilt and sew, hobbies she carries on today. Wulf attended Iowa State College and graduated with a degree in home economics. At 91, she is as active as ever and does a lot of prep work for the group outside of their weekly meeting time. In her two-bedroom apartment at the community, she has ample room to prep and cut the fabric, which she enjoys doing. She also picks out the fabric, washes the fabric pieces, irons them and cuts them to size before each weekly meeting. During the meetings, the group ties the batting and fabric together to create these special lap quilts that help bring joy to others.
"It's a good activity for me because it keeps me involved, and that's important to me," said Wulf. "It gives me a responsibility and a goal to meet that gives purpose to my life. There's a lot of time and love that goes into each quilt. The main reason we do it is to cheer people up, and that's why I stay with it and will continue to do it as long as I can."
They sell about half of their quilts in the Parkway Place community gift shop, which is open to residents and visitors. Residents like to buy lap quilts as gifts for grandchildren, and the money received from each quilt goes right back to purchase more supplies, so the group can continue their heartfelt mission.
"This group of women and their dedication to helping people in need is truly amazing and makes Parkway Place a special place to be," said Susan Phelps, marketing director of Parkway Place. "Their creations bring so much happiness to others and are a source of comfort to those who might be experiencing a hard time."