When I packed my bags for the usual holiday to Redmond, Seattle little did I realise it will also be a memorable visit. When I mentioned about my trip to Jayashree , she said “ You must meet Barbara”
Barbara? Who? Barbara Demorest is the founder of Knitted Knockers from whom Saaisha India was born replied Jayashree. My curiosity to meet Barbara multiplied. Bellingham a small town nestled between USA and Canada and close to both Seattle in USA and Vancouver in Canada is where Knitted knockers was born. On reaching Bellingham I was warmly greeted by Barabra. 10 ~ 15 volunteers were doing the filling, sizing and mailing the knockers and the pamphlets. Most of the volunteers I met were neither Knitters nor Crocheters but were meeting once a week and carry out the support activities.
All the materials required by the organization for different activities are provided solely by the donors. The interesting aspect I noticed there was the “distribution of two kinds of kits”, one “The doctors kit” and the other “The volunteers kit”. The doctor’s kit consists of a recommendation from the doctor regarding the special requirements of the patients and the requisition form. On the other hand, the Volunteer’s kit consists of various items such as needles, a list of yarns to be used, size templates, a pattern booklet, and a card with the required sizes. Apart from these kits, they also distribute pamphlets and flyers across health centres and clinics.
On close look at the knockers I could see a small difference in the quality of knockers and understood that the quality of yarn they use is little different than the one we use in Saaisha. This was mainly due to non-availability of regular vendors to supply the yarn and the yarn is usually procured from the market.
My interaction with them also revealed that there is no regular and organized training sessions conducted for the volunteers and which in my opinion may be one of the reason for a few imperfections in the knockers I saw. When I explained to them that regular online trainings being conducted by Saaisha India and the inspection by the ‘Quality Control’ team to ensure the knockers are of good quality, Barbara and her team were impressed. In the absence of regular trainings if the sizes were not proper the knockers are simply discarded.
I took the opportunity to talk about Saaisha India’s large volunteer base of 250 plus from different parts of India, The training provided and the outreach programme and their services to distribute the knocker even to small towns, Beanies for the young survivors. This impressed Barbara and her team very much and thanks to Jayashree, I am happy that I could be one of the brand ambassador of Saaisha India and make it known globally.
Saaisha India you rock!!. Let us keep rocking. Let us keep knocking