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Posts Tagged ‘Volunteer’

Meet Road 2016 Vendor: Southern California Quilts of Valor

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

The Quilts of Valor Foundation was founded in 2003 in Delaware and is an ongoing national service effort whose mission is to “cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor.” The quilts serve as tangible reminders of appreciation and gratitude to service members and unequivocally say, “Thank you for your service, sacrifice, and valor.”

The Long Beach Chapter of Quilts of Valor is headed by Chairman, Barbara Winkler.

[caption id="attachment_3812" align="aligncenter" width="545"]quiltsofvalor-1 Barbara tore her tendons and had surgery on her foot before Road. Being in a wheelchair did not hold her back from sharing her group’s message!! Photo by Brian Roberts Photography[/caption] They have been a vendor at Road to California since 2007, meeting quilters and piecers, encouraging them to be a part of this great cause.  Of their booth, Barbara commented, “We get great exposure at Road, making connections from all over.” [caption id="attachment_3814" align="aligncenter" width="433"]quiltsofvalor-3 Photo by Brian Roberts Photography[/caption] The group also receives donations during the show ranging from quilt tops to selling raffle tickets for their opportunity quilt. The drawing for their opportunity quilt is held annually on Veterans Day at the Long Beach VA Hospital. During the year, Long Beach Quilts of Valor goes to various veteran events around Southern California, telling their story and presenting quilts. In 2015, they gave away 417 quilts to service members and veterans. At the time of Road 2016, they had already given away 134 quilts with 78 more being donated January 26th to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder sufferers affiliated with the West Los Angeles Veteran Hospital. Not every recipient requests a patriotic themed quilt; it can be a painful reminder of what they went through, especially with POW’s. For those instances, Quilts of Valor volunteers make quilts in a range of colors and themes such as animals or sports. “You never know what a veteran will request. Whatever type of quilt we make, it always finds its rightful owner,” remarked Barbara. No matter what the quilt looks like, all quilts given by Quilts of Valor are numbered. [caption id="attachment_3816" align="aligncenter" width="517"]quiltsofvalor-10 Photo by Brian Roberts Photography[/caption] Each year the Southern California Quilts of Valor in Long Beach sponsors a Sew Day at Lakewood High School. This year it will be held on Saturday, February 20th, from 9:00 AM until 4:00 PM in the school cafeteria. Between 50 and 100 students and parents are expected to participate in sewing quilts as a means to give back to the community.  Quilters from the community are welcomed to come assist the young sewers. Since the 10 years the Long Beach Quilts of Valor has been organized, they have given away over 3,480 quilts. In 2015, the chapter presented a quilt to one of the last survivors (at the time of the gift, there were only 9 alive at the time) of the USS Arizona that was sunk in Pearl Harbor. For Barbara, one of the most touching donations was to a veteran from the Korean War. “He told me he had waited 62 years for someone to say thank you.” [caption id="attachment_3813" align="aligncenter" width="555"]quiltsofvalor-2 Photo by Brian Roberts Photography[/caption] Are you interested in helping with Quilts of Valor? Until December 31, 2016, they are sponsoring “BE A STAR – FOR OUR TROOPS” Participants are asked to contribute two star themed quilt blocks every two months. The only requirements are the blocks need to be 12.5” X 12.5” (12” finished), one block must have the focus color/print as the star with white as the background and the other block must have the color/print as the background and white as the star. The remaining two month periods and their themes are:

March thru April: Blue                                    May thru June: Patriotic

July thru August: Gold                                   September thru October: Service Branch Specific

November thru December: Maker’s Choice

Long Beach Quilts of Valor will assemble the quilts, make bindings, and supply the backings. For information about this project, Sew Day at Lakewood High School, or Long Beach Quilts of Valor, contact Barbara Winkler at 562-925-7673 or email socalqov@aol.com]]>

Why Volunteers Matter At Road

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

The success of Road to California relies much on the good will of our volunteers. We appreciate the many hours donated to the event with unpacking the show, tagging quilts for judging, assisting on the judging floor and in the photography room, hanging the quilts on the show floor, and of course, white glove duty. When the show is over, generous volunteers help with signing out staff, taking down the quilts and packing them for shipping back to their owners.exhibits__i4c6078

Affectionately referred to as Roadies, our volunteers come from all over the United States and abroad as well.  This year, a French magazine editor will be volunteering on the judging floor to get a feel for how Road handles this enormous and important task.  Quilters from Australia and England have also requested opportunities to help.  A Road attendee from Canada has indicated she would like to white glove.  When attendees arrive at Road, especially from a distance, they often want to fill “free” time by white gloving.  There are many volunteers from throughout Southern California who come back year after year because they love being involved.  Both men and women volunteer. Sometimes, a husband and wife will volunteer together. Or sometimes it is a mother introducing a daughter to something she has loved doing over the years. One woman from the Bay area meets her sister from the East Coast each year and they volunteer together.White Glove

Jan Huber is Road’s Volunteer Coordinator and has been sharing her duties with Joyce Bachelder for the past three years. Jan is a quilter and has herself volunteered in several capacities for Road over the years. She has also been a part of the Road Staff, coordinating the hanging of Special Exhibits. She enjoys chatting with volunteers who return year after year. Says Jan, “It is like catching up with old friends.  I love being a part of the ‘Road’ family and being involved ‘behind the scene’ at my most favorite quilt show.” 

During Road to California, Jan is really involved with her  Roadies. As a coordinator, she checks in the volunteers prior to their shift time, informs them of their responsibilities, answers questions, and assigns them to the specific locations they will cover. At the end of their shift, she checks them back in and gives out any “perks” that they might have earned. Jan strives to “ensure that all the bases are covered and that volunteers have a positive experience and look forward to the next year, too.”    Volunteer Check-In

What are some of the “perks” Jan was referring to? All volunteers that have given 4 hours of service are recognized with a Road to California pin along with a “Roadie” bar. These bars are uniquely designed every year and can be added to their special pin. In addition, volunteers who work four hours also receive a multi-day admission to the show. Volunteers who work six hours get all the perks of a four hour helper and their choice of a Special Event or Lecture Ticket (subject to availability) or Priority On-Line Registration for the 2015 Class Sessions.

New for 2014, all prospective volunteers can register on-line. Simply log on with your account at http://online.roadtocalifornia.com, change Miscellaneous Items  to Volunteer Opportunities, and drag your desired times into the calendar, then click REGISTER.  Volunteers will get an email confirmation of the day/time they have selected.  When Roadies  arrive at the Volunteer Check-In Table, they can expect a friendly greeting and a positive experience.  Road wants our volunteers to come back again and again.

Roadies must be 18 years of age (due to insurance reasons), be in good physical health, and be able to stand and/or walk for a two-hour shift.

Finally, Jan offers her perspective of volunteering at Road: “Volunteering is a great way to get up close and personal with exquisite quilts and is an opportunity to interact with other quilt lovers from all over.  It is also a great way to share information with the viewing public.  Plus, it is great fun to be a part of a major quilt show.  Enthusiasm for quilting can be contagious!”White Glove

Share your enthusiasm for quilting…sign up on-line to be an official Road to California Roadie.