Where we live, work, play and learn matters to our health. Our environments determine whether we have access to healthy options, as well as services that allow us to maintain our health and stay safe. Polk County Public Health (PCPH) promotes health for everyone within our county regardless of where we live, our annual income, education, race or ethnicity. We also rally groups and individuals around the many social determinants that shape people's health.
For several years, quilting groups from Trinity Lutheran in Crookston and Trinity Lutheran in Beltrami have supported public health by donating hundreds of quilts which are provided to some of our community’s most vulnerable members- children.
For more years than most women would like to admit, they have gathered, thread and needles in tow, during the winter months. “This year we will not make as many quilts as in past years because it seemed that every Monday we had a snow storm”, offered Crookston quilter, Beth Parnow. Yet, weather permitting quilters arrive every Monday and Tuesday at their respective churches for a day filled with cutting, pinning, ironing and sewing. Their work is determined as well as logistical. Each quilter is stationed at a different job but all play an equally important role in quilt production although those operating sewing machines laughingly describe their role as “the most important”. “You know”, offered Ardel Eia of Beltrami, “it’s not just us gals here; our men also help us out quite a bit. I can’t tell you how much material and quilts they’ve hauled out for us and Lord knows we couldn’t do this without them.”
If you observed both quilting groups you might wonder which is most important, creating quilts or conversation. But don’t even think for a minute that their conversations impede quilt production. They talk amongst one another rarely taking their eyes or hands off of their work. Many women have been quilting together for years and have seen each other through some of life’s biggest joys as well as its most difficult times. Their bonds of friendship have been sewn together just like the individual pieces of their quilts. They gather each year out of their love for one another, their community and the children whose lives have been touched (and warmed) by their gifts.
Polk County Public Health salutes quilters from Trinity Lutheran in Crookston and Trinity Lutheran in Beltrami for the work they do serving and supporting their communities.