Quilting with Margaret, originally Quilting with Harriet, has been a mainstay on Tuesday afternoons for approximately 12 years at the Palatine Park District.
Under the direction of Margaret Luba, the group meets weekly to work on individual quilting projects, trading patterns and quilting knowledge. In addition to their personal quilts, the group also works on collaborative efforts including quilts for historic Clayson House and other charitable efforts.
In 2012, one of the quilters, Enid Figueroa, brought a story to the quilting group. She heard through her daughter about a group of teenage girls, who were patients with Northwest Treatment Associates, a Behavioral Health Counseling Private Practice that specializes in the treatment of those who have suffered from sexual abuse.
Upon hearing of the girls, the quilting group decided to make individual quilts for the six girls, who were undergoing therapy at the time. The ladies worked for almost a year to create six individual lap sized quilts titled Friendly Ties, Flower Patch, Shining Star, Friendly Pinwheels, Blooming Colors and Bright and Lovely.
Members of the quilting group who assisted with the quilt project include Margaret Luba, Enid Figueroa, Margaret Plank, Renjie Chang, Sandy Fehling, Judy Dzikonski, Blanca Villasenor, Sandy Bonsignore, Carol Crozier and Judy Swearingen.
The girls wrote thank you notes to the quilters. The recipient of the Flower Patch Quilt wrote in her thank you note, "I can see how much effort and detail you put into the quilts and it makes me feel bewondered that you took time to do it."
According to Carol Fetzner of Northwest Treatment Associates, "This was truly a remarkable thing for the group to do and we are very cognizant of the work, effort and time commitment that the ladies gave to the project."
From a therapeutic perspective, Fetzner formed two group units for the girls in direct relation to the gift of the quilts. One group discussion centered on how each of the girls is unique, just like the quilts are unique. A second group session followed the gifting of the quilts, regarding how the girls can comfort and nurture themselves, similar to the comfort received from the quilts.
"At the core, the project was really and truly a gift from the heart from these ladies for adolescent girls who have experienced sexual abuse. It is so important for these girls to know that most people are good and kind like the quilt makers. The quilts are truly a keepsake they will use for the rest of their lives," Fetzner said.
A new session of Quilting With Margaret will begin Tuesday, Sept. 3. During the school year, the group meets from 1 to 3 p.m. at Falcon Park Recreation Center, 2195 N. Hicks Road, Palatine. No experience is necessary. In the program, Margaret will teach the basic techniques of piecing, patching and quilting. Participants are asked to bring a self-fitting thimble to class. The fee is $5 for residents and $6 for nonresidents for the 14 week session; materials are not included.
While continuing to work on their individual quilting projects, the group's next collaborative effort will be a holiday quilt. The quilt will be raffled off at the Dec. 6 screening of the holiday classic, "It's a Wonderful Life," which will be shown at Cutting Hall Performing Arts Center, 150 E. Wood St., Palatine.
Admission to the movie is free; raffle tickets will be available for $2 each. Tickets for the movie will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at the Community Center beginning in September. Raffle proceeds will benefit the Susannah's Gift Scholarship Fund which aids Park District residents who need financial assistance to participate in Palatine Park District cultural arts activities.
For more information about Quilting with Margaret, contact Carol Lange, Cultural Arts coordinator at (847) 496-6237 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Northwest Treatment Associates was founded in 1997 with a dedication to making the world a safer place by specializing in the treatment of sexual abuse. Such a focus is accomplished by providing a comprehensive range of clinical treatment services for all persons affected by sexual abuse and child maltreatment and trauma.
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