Quilts Of Valor

Quilts of Valor (QOV) is a nation-wide program that focuses on showing support to wounded soldiers through the gift of a quilt, during their recovery. While there are many groups that focus on making quilts for Veterans and wounded soldiers, QOV is the only non-profit group, which I’m aware of, that focuses on making quilts for Veterans and wounded soldiers. I also believe QOV is the oldest group that has focused on providing quilts to Veterans and wounded soldiers.

Here’s some history about QOV:

In 2003, Catherine Roberts of Seaford, Deleware, started the Quilts of Valor Foundation when her son and his 630th MP Company were being deployed from Germany to Iraq for one year. She was thrown into a group of other Americans who send their loved one into harm’s way. She started the group by appealing to both quilt-toppers and the longarming group to volunteer their fabric, their talents and time to make wartime quilts of valor that would comfort our wounded.

The mission of the QOV Foundation is to cover ALL wounded and injured service members from the War on Terror, whether physical or psychologically, with wartime quilts called Quilts of Valor (QOV). Quilts are also being given to many of the families who have lost loved ones in this war.

A quilt symbolizes comfort and warmth. It can signify home, family, and love. And it can mean a whole lot more to a wounded soldier, returning home from the war in Iraq. The Quilts of Valor Foundation’s goal is to provide a handmade quilt to every soldier wounded in service, to show them gratitude and welcome them home.

QOV needs more volunteers to help in many areas. While information is available on their website about how to volunteer, volunteer quilters are needed, longarm quilters are needed, and volunteers to help coordinate. And, even if you don’t quilt, but know how to sew, you can help. Plus, donations are always welcome. There are so many ways volunteers can help, that I just want to encourage everyone interested to become familiar with the QOV website and contact QOV for more info, if you are interested in helping in any way.

Insights from QOV Volunteers:

This beautiful quilt was pieced by Pene’ BALLINI of Eugene, Oregon and quilted by Jim Hogan.

Jo Stauffer made this beautiful quilt. The quilt pattern by Alicya Quilts. The long arm quilting, on this quilt, was done by Larry Gore. Jo has made many quilts for QOV and posts photos of many of her quilts on Flickr {click here to see more of her quilts}. Jo views herself as a “topper”. She makes quilt tops, choosing what ever design she wants. She then contacts the coordinator for the “Toppers and Quilters” and is matched with a volunteer Long Arm Quilter. Jo then sends her top and backing to the Long Arm quilter to quilt it. These Long Arm Quilters, or other volunteers, may then finish the quilt, or it could be sent back to Jo who will then bind it and make a label for it, as well as make a homemade card to go with the quilt to the soldier.

As QOV asks for a journal to be sent with the quilt, to the wounded soldier or veteran, Jo tends to make a home made that has photos of her family and some family insight. She also shares some insight about making the quilt and the long arm quilting process. When the quilt and journal are finished she emails a contact at QOV who provides info on where the quilt is to be shipped to.

Quilts are generally sent to a Point of Contact who makes the presentations at the Base, Veteran’s Hospital, Walter Reed , Landstuhl Regional or other military facility where she has made a contact. Jo has also given them locally when Jo has heard of someone who has returned from Iraq or Afghanistan and is struggling with their adjustment.

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FOR MORE INFO ON QOV:

QOV website: http://qovf.org/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com {search for QOV}

QOV Blog: http://quiltsofvalor.wordpress.com/

Alicia Quilts blogspot: http://alyciaquilts.blogspot.com/

I believe the motto of QOV is “Still at war, still quilting”. Clearly, it is going to take a lot of volunteer quilters, long armers and other volunteers to help provide a quilt to every wounded soldier and Veteran. I am eager to help and hope others will be too.

I also want to personally thank all the service men and women who serve to protect others. I also want to thank those that help make quilts for QOV. What a wonderful project and a great cause. Providing handmade quilts to a wounded soldier & Veteran seems to be a small gesture to what they have given us….FREEDOM!

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