Kit-making with The Craftivist Collective
If you want to do a good deed in time for Christmas, what better way to earn your presents this year than to make your way to the London offices of Fine Cell Work and pitch in with The Craftivist Collective, making needlework kits for people in prison.
The Craftivist Collective has held several of these gatherings in the past on behalf of the charity, which uses craft as a means of rehabilitation, giving prisoners a sense of hope, direction and a much-needed self-esteem boost, as well as paid employment during their incarceration.
Sarah Corbett, founder of the Collective, is looking forward to her fourth session of kit-making – which invariably involve lots of home-made cakes and endless cups of tea – explaining that it is a great opportunity for new volunteers to come along and find out more about Fine Cell Work and what the social enterprise does. “They ask questions about how it works, the prison system, we have conversations about craft, activisim, inequality. It’s also nice for people who might not want to do their own craftivism but want to help out in different ways. We get some regulars who come along who don’t like cross-stitching but they’re more than happy to make kits,” she says.
Doing good at this time of year also has special meaning, Sarah continues, noting that inmates spend an increased amount of time in their cells at Christmas, as there are fewer staff members working in prisons. “They are upset anyway, being away from their friends and family. It’s a nice thing for us to do, while supporting these prisoners,” she adds.
Providing people with these kits means they can keep themselves occupied while in their cells, making unique cushions, bags, quilts and decorations from bespoke patterns provided by the likes of Cath Kidston and Emily Peacock. Although this event on December 3rd has sold out, The Collective is sure to hold another kit-making extravaganza, so you too can join in and help support a truly worthy cause.
- Craft in the information age (britishmuseum.org)
- The Craftivist Collective – making the world a better place one stitch at a time (blackcatoriginals.wordpress.com)
- Craftivist Collective: In pictures (blackcatoriginals.wordpress.com)