When Norma let everyone know about the Red Scarf Project, for college kids who've aged out of foster care and are out on their own, I was thrilled. Not that I need a new knit. I'm up to my knuckles - literally- in fingerless mitts . Then there's my quest for the ultimate warm hat for myself, my yearning for a skull & bones pirate patterned hat, started sweaters......
Nope. The reason I am thrilled to drop it all to knit a red scarf right away is that kids who age out of foster care need advocacy. I'll go on about this further down, I'll do the yarn stuff first.
Consider this a chance to switch gears, try a new stitch, do a bulky knit. Me? I hit the koolaid shelf at the local market.
Lions Brand Fishermans Wool soaking in Berry Cherry with a bit of Grape. The second half got Tropical Punch, Berry Cherry & Orange. Good thing the scarf doesn't have to be red, I call these Bright Coral and Chinese Red. The yarn is good for dying with KoolAid, it got nice and soft in the process. And the process itself....the moment when you drag it out of the dye and see that the yarn is colored and the water is clear: magic!
Consider a red scarf as a little break and a great cause this week, woncha?
Basics: knit a red (or other color) scarf and get it to an Einsteins Bagel by the end of January.
To the soapbox: truthfully, I'd never thought about what happens to kids when they turn 18 years old and age out of foster care. In 2003, I was hired to photograph for a book on the subject, On Their Own: What Happens to Kids When They Age Out of Foster Care. Its very readable, by a wonderful journalist who'd followed 10 kids as they made their way in the world after foster care ended. Two had died, I spent time photographing the other eight, in whatever circumstance they were in. The kids had big issues to deal with and they were truly on their own. Each kid talked about small gestures making a big difference. Several mentioned life events - like a college graduation - when no one came to see them reach that moment. All of them inspired me with their resiliency.
More info at www.orphan.org or from The Jim Casey Youth Opportunity Initiative, a foundation that advocates for successful transitions to adulthood for kids who've aged out of foster care.
Soapbox pushed back under the sofa. Now git knittin'.
P.S. rock chick is onto this too. And you know how cool she is.....