Kenora Warmth & Wellness Group make a difference

Submitted by: Cynthia Laliberte, MNO Kenora Métis Council Chair

Kenora warmth and wellness group
The Kenora Warmth and Wellness Group

The Kenora Warmth and Wellness Group (KWWG) was established six years ago through a seniors’ grant to the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Kenora Métis Council (KMC). The KWWG currently has nineteen members as well as three home knitters. Several of its members are Métis, including Cynthia Laliberte, MNO KMC Chair. Membership has continued to grow every year!

KWWG members are thankful to Evergreen School for allowing them to get together once a week free-of-charge to knit and crotchet items for those in need. In the summer, the KWWG will be moving to the Rideout Community Club— the same place the annual spring and fall fundraisers are held.

The KWWG uses donated wool to knit and crochet items of warmth such as hats, scarves, mitts, slippers, chemo hats and blankets. The KWWG donates their pieces to a variety of organizations, including: the Lake of the Woods District Hospital; the Kenora Sexual Assault Center; Migisi; Birchwood Terrace Nursing Home; the Atikokan Hospital; Seven Generations School; and Ontario Works who brings these donations to areas in need such as Red Lake and Sioux Lookout. Special "touch blankets" have also been made in the past for the Alzheimers Group. Hat, scarves and mitts were also made and donated to the Ontario Provincial Police so that they can be kept in their cruisers and given to people who are in trauma.

The KWWG has also helped other organizations, including: the Red Cross (Keewatin area); assisting with workshops at the Jubilee Church, providing support with a fundraiser hosted by the Women’s Place, and helping young students in attaining community service hours for school.

The KWWG has provided support to the MNO KMC on initiatives such as moccasin making classes, the Wee Youth group, coffee houses, and Louis Riel day celebrations.

The KWWG has a sister group in Winnipeg called “The St. Vital Warmth and Wellness Group". This group focuses on making scarves, hats, mitts and blankets, which are all put in a back pack and handed out before Christmas. The KWWG would like to recognize Linda Loutit and her daughter Maegen for doing an amazing job on this initiative!

If you know of someone in need who could benefit from knitted and crocheted items, please call Wendy Langlois at 807-548-4289. Anonymity and privacy will be respected. 

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