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Quilts-R-Us donates 34 quilts to F.I.S.H.

December 6, 2017
By ED FRANKS ( , Pine Island Eagle

About two dozen women got together at the Matlacha Community Center last week to present F.I.S.H. (Fellow Islanders Sending Help) with more than 30 hand-made quilts. The quilts will be given to mothers with newborn babies and seniors.

Quilts-R-Us began 29 years ago in 1988 and has been donating quilts for over 20 years.

"There are still a few of us original members left," Dolores Ambrose said. "The ladies start making quilts in January of every year. Then at this time, just before Christmas, we donate them to F.I.S.H. The quilts are given to families in need as part of their Basket Brigade. The Basket Brigade provides assistance for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets.""

Article Photos

Posing with the donated quilts are the Quilts-R-Us members with F.I.S.H. volunteers at the far end.


Marge Gammon has been a member of Quilts-R-Us for two years.

"The ladies make quilts all year long and every one is unique," Gammon said. "There are patterns and even materials I wouldn't think of putting together and every quilt turns out just great."

Debbie Webster has been a member of Quilts-R-Us for 6 or 7 years.

"Jennifer Fox introduced me to Quilts-R-Us," Webster said. "It's just part of what this group does - we make quilts and donate them as 'charity quilts' to F.I.S.H. We like the idea that these quilts stay local helping people on Pine Island and Matlacha."

"This year Pine Island F.I.S.H. (Fellow Islanders Sending Help) is celebrating 30 years of service to Pine Island residents," director Dianne Higgens said. "The organization was 'officially' established in January 1987 to provide rides to islanders that did not have any other means of transportation."

Since that time F.I.S.H. services have expanded greatly beyond providing non-emergency transportation to include mobility equipment and even emergency financial assistance.

"These quilts will be donated to families in our Basket Brigade," Higgins said. "Families with newborns and seniors. I want to thank all of you for your hard work. I know the families that receive these beautiful quilts appreciate them.

"F.I.S.H. is a completely volunteer organization where all of our activities are initiated from the homes of volunteers. There is no central office or paid staff and the majority of funds come from Pine Island and Matlacha. There is never a charge for any F.I.S.H. service and services are provided regardless of the economic status of clients, except for financial assistance."



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