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Every child at Body Camp Elementary School received a hand-knitted sweater, scarf and hat last week, courtesy of a volunteer effort by folks in the Smith Mountain Lake area. The work was spearheaded by Adele Frischman.
“This project is huge,” commented Frischman.
She needed 175 sweaters this year. In order to make this project happen, Frischman just asks.
“Everywhere I happen to be, I ask everyone, ‘Do you knit or crochet? Would you like to make a sweater?’” she explained.
It’s hard for people to say “no” to Frischman.
“I’m a little old lady,” she said.
Frischman stores the knitted items at her home as they are completed. When the day comes to distribute them, they are taken to the school and laid out according to size. Each child picks out a sweater and tries it on to be sure it fits. Then, the student picks out a scarf and hat to match it.
“It’s just a very precious thing,” Frischman said.
That idea comes from her wedding, 60 years ago. A woman made her wedding gown and told her, “Every stitch is a stitch of love.” Frischman applies this to the handmade sweaters — every stitch in them is an expression of love for these children.
“Anyone who does hand work for others is a special person,” she said.
Frischman brought the concept to Body Camp because a friend was the school nurse there. Her friend mentioned the need in the community. She decided that all of the students at the school should be offered a sweater.
Of course, Frischman was there last week for the sweater distribution.
“Oh, I wouldn’t miss that even if they (had to take) me in on a stretcher,” she said.