Around a year ago, members of Ons Hekel shared in the grief member Katinka's daughter Anja died. She underwent heart surgery during December, started her recovery and even posted on the group to thank everyone for their well wishes.
Her sudden death was tragic, a shock to all.
The response at Ons Hekel was amazing. Someone suggested hooking a comforting blanket for Anja's parents, in purple, her favourite colour. Katinka's sister put it together, and soon a blanket in all shades of purple was presented to Katinka and Tinus the first Anja blanket.
And then, as with a snowball, the Anja blanket got a life of it's own, and a movement grew out of this one blanket. A whole new group was created on Facebook - Anja Blokkies Trooskombers - with the sole purpose of creating comfort blankets to those who lost a loved one after the date of Anja's death.
The group stands at around 1700 members today, who are all either knitting/crocheting squares, putting them together, or providing moral support.
One hundred blankets have been delivered, with another 50 in production.
There have already been 230 requests.
After a year, this project has grown beyond belief and has brought healing and comfort to so many people - it is a blessing to Anja's family and all involved.
Katinka said: " The spirit of love and goodwill that we as a family have experienced and are still experiencing through this initiative of a lady called Sharon, is amazing. It is incredibly humbling to realize that somewhere, someone has take the time out of their busy lives to make a square in rememberence of somebody they don't even know. My sister has already received more than 50 blocks and still they keep coming. There are no words to express how this loving gesture is helping us through this difficult time. Thank you....Katinka and family."
And recently: "... since my Anja died exactly a year ago, the Anja Group that grew out of Ons Hekel determined my future...and put my mind and future on a positive and inspiring path."
Today, a baby was born, a grandchild to Katinka and Tinus, a baby that carries her late aunty's name.
A whole group of crocheters waited for this little one, waited and counted the days and minutes until we saw the first photo of Heidi Anja.
May she bring joy and even more healing to this family who has suffered such loss and has healed so much, and now is such a blessing to other.
|Some blankets already delivered. Look closely - each one has a purple "Anja Square" with a red heart.|
|This is a blanket production line!|
God bless all involved.