The AP salutes the American quilters who have helped to assemble advocacy quilts. Over 40 quilters have participated, from seven states (Maryland, Michigan, Indiana, New Jersey, South Carolina, Rhode Island, and New York.) They all donated their time for free and showed incredible skill and commitment. Several have said that working on quilts has opened their eyes to the challenges facing women in the Global South – but also to their artistry. We look forward to working more with these talented American artists.
The first quilting project involved quilters from the Faithful Circle Quilt Guild, in Columbia, Maryland (right) and the Capitol City Quilt Guild (below). The two groups worked together by phone and email in 2011 to assemble the six Ahadi quilts from the Congo. Thanks to the following quilters from Faithful circle: Janet O’Leary and Carolyn May, Alka Mital, Sharon Rhoton, Peg McClelland, Susan Schreurs, Sally Timko, and Beth Bohac. Click on the right for a video of the quilters at work.
Quilters from the Capitol City Quilt Guild, in Lansing Michigan, with one of the three Ahadi (Congolese) quilts that they assembled in 2011. From the left: Barbara Jepson-Taylor, Minda Schneider, Janet Munn, Sue Kesti, and Rosamond Meerdink.
Barbara Barber, from Rhode Island, assembled the Belize Forest Quilt and the Belize Orchid Quilt.
Onalie Gagliano, from New Jersey, put together the Maasai Girls quilt from the Kakenya Center for Excellence in Kenya, and the fifth Love Blanket from BASE in Nepal.
Maria O’Haver, from Maryland, worked on the Mahilako Swastha (Women’s Health) quilts, made by women in Nepal for the Women’s Reproductive Rights Program (WRRP).
Barbara Wofford, from Maryland, assembled the Czech Roma quilt from panels that were made by Roma women in Mimon, Czech Republic, with help from Barb’s daughter Beth who served as a Peace Fellow in the Czech Republic.
Susan Louis, from New York, compiled the Sixth Love Blanket at her home in New York, from panels made by freed domestic slaves in Nepal. (Photo left by Ben Gancsos ©)
Kim, Kelly and Shannon, Rochester, from New York, at work on the first version of the Romano Trajo (Roma Life) quilt from Lithuania.
Kathy Springer, from Indianapolis, has assembled three advocacy quilts: the Rehema Widows Quilt from Kenya; the Moroccan Amizigh Quilt; and the Women’s Microcredit Quilt from Bangladesh.
Quilters Nancy Evans (left) and Sharon Rhoton (middle), from Maryland, from the Faithful Circle Quilt Guild, were part of the group that assembled the two Mahalako Swastha quilts from Nepal. They are pictured with Peace Fellow Kate Bollinger, who worked with the artists in Nepal and brought the painted panels back to the US.
Carol Grimstad assembled the Women’s Microcredit Quilt from panels made by women members of a microcredit cooperative in Bangladesh.
Bobbi Fitzsimmons and Sharon Sisson from the Swan Lake Quilt Guild in Sumter, South Carolina assembled the Gracanica Roma Quilt, and the Child protection quilt.
Alison Wilbur, from Rhode Island, is the founder of Quilt for Change. She assembled the Chintan wastepicker’s quilt and the Romano Trajo (Roma Life) quilt.
The River Gypsy Quilt from Bangladesh was assembled by The Sisters Choice quilters in Falls Church Virginia: Leslie Jo Waters, Cathy Eckbreth, Gail Wentzell, Beth Suddaby, and Amy Loar. The quilters explain what they learned about the River Gypsies from working on the quilt in the video on the right. For more on the making of the quilt, click here .
Henna Pride was assembled in Maryland, US, by Nancy Evans (right) and John Anderson. Nancy also helped to assemble the Ahadi quilts from the DRC and the Vietnam Disability Quilt.