Happy Stitches

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The Kindness of Strangers September 30, 2010

Filed under: Teaching Woes — happystitches @ 16:42

Thank you all so very much for your many kind letters of support. I apologize for not yet having responded to you all, but every single message has been read and appreciated. I have been busy trying to finish my book, Cool Knitters Finish in Style, and we are nearly there. Also, I have been working madly to complete several new patterns (so as to make up the shortfall of income this year!) and tidy things here before I hit the skies for a 19 day, 5 city working tour.  Well, maybe you can’t call Quadra a city, but Fun Knits (on a beautiful island) sounds like my kind of place!

Just so that you are aware, there are plans afoot for a short and serious fundraising attempt to assist ALL of the out-of-pocket Knit Camp tutors. If you are an unpaid tutor from UK Knit Camp  and not on the list, please contact me: I will forward your info to the organizers. Below, I quote you Ravelry post that sets forth some of the preliminary details about the fund.

J (the force behind the fund) is also the kind soul who drove Mary Jane Mucklestone and me to the airport at some ungodly hour at the end of Camp, so I can attest to her graciousness. I also thank Pat Ashforth for remaining involved, even though she was one of the few to be paid.  For a slight change of topic, you should see their illusion knitting! Steve Plummer (her partner) had the whole Scottish pub (non-knitters) entranced when he began showing us some of his pieces:  Hagrid, Marilyn Munro, the Madonna…. wow!

“Hi guys,

Some of you may have heard via posts and my blog that I’ve been in contact with the tutors, now formed into their own Tutors Group, about my plans to set up a scheme that would enable people who wished to donate safely and with confidence to a Tutors Group Fund.

After everything all of us have been through I knew this had to be a cast-iron squeaky clean arrangement, so an Accountancy Firm I know is in the final stages of having a new PayPal account verified just for this purpose. The Accountants will be running the fund and will produce audited accounts at the end – I would like to make clear what will be in the bold print when the fund account is open and I post the full details (I think we’ve all had more than enough of ‘small print’!) that the fund will be for the Tutors as a group and they will be deciding amongst themselves how the funds raised and donated will be distributed.

This information will remain private to the Tutors Group – after the way they have been treated in the face of their professionalism and what they did to make the bits of KC that were good, absolutely fantastic for so many of us, this privacy and dignity is what they deserve.

My role in all this is just as an enabler – all that my husband and I are doing is funding the Accountancy costs so that every penny/cent given will go straight to the Tutor Fund – oh and trying to make sure that everyone who might want to give knows about the fund when it opens. Casey & Co have kindly agreed that we can post about this on Rav and have even said I can post in needlework on the net. Ambermoggie, whom I got to meet in person at Massham Sheep Fair on Saturday, has kindly said I can start a thread in this group once the account is open and we can GO!

Anyway, just had the incredibly frustrating news from the Accountant that we can’t start using the PayPal account until PayPal have completed the verification process which takes a few days. -Grrrr, pull out hair, even a rude word escaped my lips! Then I realised that of course I’m just a teeny tiny part of this, and while we must wait until the account is open before telling everyone about it and giving details of how to make payments, anyone who is interested and wants to get involved can start thinking about it. This is all about everyone – those who were there, those who were angered/upset by learning about what went on and how the tutors were affected, those who have taken classes with some of the affected tutors in the past, or met them at other events, or just admire their work and want to get involved in this.

Can’t tell you all how much better I feel now I’ve reminded myself that this is so much bigger than just me, and there is a lot that can get sorted by everyone who wants to in the final few days while we wait for the account to open. I’ve already had pm’s about some great fund raising ideas, so some of you may wish to focus on that area. Must add, this account is going to be open for only a limited time so we all (those who want to get involved) have a big push during the month of October, and we can get it all done as quickly as possible to get the funds to the Tutor Group. So please plan any fundraising ideas to be finished before the end of October.

Other people will want to donate, but may have friends in other Rav groups they’d like to inform about the fund. I’ll arrange the post about the fund so that all the vital information people need to read first is together and can easily be copied into posts people may want to make in other groups. Please only post in groups you are already a member of, and take great care not to venture into spamming – it might also be polite to check with a group mod first – you can tell them that Casey and Sarah have confirmed we can post in groups on Rav. This is something you could get done now so you can post in your group(s) as soon as the fund is open.

ps – I will be giving full details of the Accountants in the formal post, plus the link so you can check their registrations etc (I know some people are feeling bruised and let down by some of the accounting practices they have experienced around KC), but if you want any info to check before that, please pm me.

I’ll be starting a new Tutors Group Fund thread in this group once the fund is finally open, so look out for it!

Thanks, J”

*J has a blog that you can visit by clicking here.

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2 Responses to “The Kindness of Strangers”

  1. Robin Peters Henne Says:

    I’m glad there’s some sunlight in this whole nasty situation. I’m appalled that something like that could happen in a universe I’d like to think is peopled with kind and friendly folk. Pollyanna that i apparently am. Hope your island visit is restful and recuperative.

  2. Lucy Neatby Says:

    Thanks. All the tutors deeply appreciate the fundraising efforts, it looks as if expenses might be covered. We also want to make sure that something like this never happens again to either students or tutors. Knitter’s are overwhelmingly lovely warm, generous folks and just occasionally someone spots this and takes advantage. I feel that in this case it was wildly unrealistic ambition (blind to the cautions given her) than intent to defraud, but the result is much the same.


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