Something quietly good has been operating for decades in Gunnedah and it combats big tragedies with a small but mighty act of kindness.

Wrap With Love is an Australian charity that sends blankets to victims of natural disasters, wars, famine and abuse – warming the world one stitch at a time.

That compassion worked its way into the hearts of Gunnedah women decades ago.

Elaine Bridge, Louise and Kathryne Timmins, Marj Hill and Helen Murrell were women the Gunnedah Times met with to discuss the charity.

While these women have lost count of how many wraps they have made, they are proud contributors of the 27,246 blankets sent to countries around the world last year including Armenia, Syria and Ukraine along with those who need it in Australia.

The charity was formed in 1992 and just one year later Gunnedah’s Elaine Bridge joined.

She met the founder, Sonia Gidley King OAM, in Sydney a few years later.

The movement was started when Sonia was in hospital and bored out of her mind.

She requested her friend bring some wool and needles, which set in motion an idea to start making wraps.

Sonia passed away in 2010 but her legacy has lived on with the people who share the same compassion.

“Brilliant lady,” Elaine said. “She was a lovely person, really bubbly.”

Elaine happened to be browsing a craft shop while on a holiday in Queensland when she met two ladies, one crocheting and one knitting.

“They said ‘we make these for Wrap With Love’ and I said ‘who?’,” Elaine reminisced.

The rest is history and she is still involved more than 30 years later.

“Everywhere I went I took my crochet hook and wool,” she said.

In sickness and in health her love for creating these blankets had her crocheting and knitting whenever possible.

While Elaine thought at one point she may have been the first person to bring it to Gunnedah, there were likely others in the locality before her.

Louise Timmins was involved in the organisation through her mother in Newcastle along with women at the Uniting Church.

“I cannot really take credit for being the first but as far as [Marj Hill and Helen Murrell], I introduced it to them,” she said.

“I do not know of anyone else in Gunnedah.”

About eight people meet on the first Monday of every month at the Lions Hall which was once called the embroidery group.

Not all of them are involved with the charity but they do bring an occasional blanket for donations.

“We have had a few of our older members pass away. Our oldest one who was knitting and crocheting was 102,” she said.

Elaine has kept photos throughout the years of children receiving their wraps and giving the camera a big smile.

“I have no idea where my rugs go, I am just happy to know that I am very warm at night and I have got nice warm clothes during the winter time,” she said.

“And now with all this war and bombing there will be a lot [of wraps] going [to people in need of them].”

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