VACAVILLE — Sewing machines were buzzing and needles threading Sunday as Santa’s little helpers patched together stocking and quilts for the holiday season.
Well, they weren’t actually Santa’s elves, but these Vanden High School honor students poured their heart, soul and their weekend into their hand-made creations to help young victims of Hurricane Sandy.
Vanden High School teacher coordinator Marilyn Lewis started the Vacaville Binky Patrol eight years ago as a way to lend her sewing services to a community cause.
Before Lewis started the chapter, she said that she had so many extra blankets and quilts that she didn’t have enough people to take them. When she tried to donate the blankets to local businesses, they were skeptical of her intentions.
That’s when she heard about Binky Patrol, a nation-wide volunteer effort to provide children in need with blankets.
Lewis decided they needed a few extra hands for their effort and commissioned Vanden High’s honor students to help.
More than 20 students helped cut fabric and sew as they prepared hundreds of stockings and quilts. Every year, Binky Patrol makes more than 300 stockings to give to wounded soldiers coming through Travis Air Force Base during the Christmas season.
This year, the group expanded its project and decided to create quilts for children who lost their homes in Hurricane Sandy. Normally Binky Patrol focuses on local causes, but Lewis said the group will sometimes reach out for national or international needs.
Two years ago the group made extra blankets for victims of the San Bruno explosion, and last year they sent more than 1,100 quilts to Japan after the tsunami.
While most of the students have little or no sewing experience, Lewis said they’re enthusiastic to try.
“The kids want to do stuff,” she said. “This is their opportunity to learn sewing. If they mess up the first few times, that’s okay.”
Reach Heather Ah San at 427-6977 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/HeatherMalia.