Love through quilting

Hundreds of handmade quilts from a group of enthusiasts are donated each year to victims of sexual abuse and family violence, returned servicemen, and families facing life threatening illness of a loved one.

Since 2007, Bay Quilters have donated around 4,000 comforters through its Quilts from the Heart project.

Judith Baxter is part of the 50-strong group who make quilts through the project for the South Eastern Centre Against Sexual Abuse, domestic violence support service EMERGE, Very Special Kids, RSL and hospital neo natal units.

“Quilting has an emotional connection,” she said. “I often think of the person that will receive the quilt.”

Women have passed on their thanks with comments like, ‘the colours brighten my day, I can wrap it around and feel the love of other women who care’ and ‘I feel lonely at night and scared in public, the quilt gives me comfort’.

Bay Quilters rely on fabric donations and grant funding to cover costs.

“We are pleased that Council has supported our Quilts for the Heart project through community grants over the past three years,” she said.

Most municipalities across Victoria saw a decline in family violence incidents between 2016/17 and 2017/18, however reports in Bayside are increasing.

In 2017/18, police received 702 local reports of family violence incidents, 23 more than the previous year.

Council works with Women’s Health in the South East, White Ribbon and Southern Melbourne Primary Care Partnership to address underlying issues of family violence.

If you want to leave or talk through a family violence situation, contact safe steps Family Violence Response Centre on 1800 015 188.

Bayside ladies sitting on quilts

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