Peacehaven based great-gran, Phyllis Parris, 86 wanted to keep busy and use her skills during Lockdown. So she started knitting cuddly toy animals, hoping to sell one or two to raise money for Martlets.
She kept knitting all through Lockdown, making almost 30. Her granddaughter helped to sell her creations through local online community group Nextdoor. Both were taken by surprise by the interest in the cuddly toys. In just two weeks, she had sold almost of them and made £200 to donate to Martlets.
Phyllis used her love of knitting for good because of her connection to the hospice.
“Like so many other people I am finding life quite difficult because of coronavirus and Lockdown restrictions. I wanted to keep myself occupied while I was at home. I love knitting but wanted to try and do some good and help a local charity. My husband and our family were helped by Martlets when he was ill and I know how much care they give to people in our community, so I knew I wanted to help them if I could.”
“I had an idea to make cuddly toy animals as that way I could be a bit more creative and work on something different every day. I called all the animals my ‘Martlets Menagerie’!”
Phyllis granddaughter Lisa encouraged her to sell her menagerie for a £10, or even just a donation. Not expecting to raise much money, Phyllis and Lisa were certainly surprised by the response.
“We just really didn’t have any idea they would be so popular. I think it might be because there is such a wide variety of animals – I have had the most requests for my octopus so far – and they are all different colours and characters so people can choose the ones they like the best. People seem happy to buy them to donate money to such a good cause too. We have had such lovely comments from people who have bought them that it has meant even more that people have been so kind as well as generous.
“I was overwhelmed when Lisa told me about how much money we raised so quickly – I think I better get knitting some more in this new Lockdown and maybe for Christmas!”