Close knit community project sews the seeds for change

Quilts that Care

A children's Care Bears quilt, donated by Ann Robinson


The University of Western Sydney is piecing together the patchwork of Australia’s quilting community to raise much-needed funds for Mission Australia and the Exodus Foundation.

Dr Diana Whitton from the School of Education at UWS has established the ambitious local fundraising initiative ‘Quilts that Care’ with the help of the Remnant Warehouse in Alexandria and Thirroul Custom Quilting.

Experienced and inexperienced quilters are gathering at the Remnant Warehouse for regular sewing days and members of the community are invited to donate fabric, materials and completed quilts for the cause.

The aim is to collect 100 colourful, quality hand-made quilts that will be sold at an exhibition in November 2012.

Quilts that Care

A checked flannelette quilt, being made by the Remnant Warehouse volunteers


“The ‘Quilts that Care’ project was founded as a means of harnessing the skill and creativity of local people for a truly worthwhile cause,” says Dr Whitton.

“The project is still in its early days, but the response has already been heart-warming. A number of finished quilts have already been generously donated, over 30 tops have been sewn ready to be quilted, and local businesses have also come on board by contributing essential materials such as rolls of backing, wadding and pieces of fabric.”

With the University’s Spring semester beginning this week, the project will soon be enriched by a team of student volunteers at the UWS Penrith campus, who will participate as part of the Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) program.

SIFE is a unit of study that can be chosen by UWS students as an elective. The idea behind the program is that students’ academic experiences can be enriched through their participation in practical community development projects.

Quilts that Care

A colourful checked quilt, donated by Judy Campbell


“The ‘Quilts that Care’ project is just one of many community development projects that the UWS SIFE students will be able to choose to participate in this semester,” says Dr Whitton.

“As part of their participation in the unit, the students will be working to drum up community support for ‘Quilts that Care,’ coordinate the collection of donations, and will organise and run the end-of-year exhibition and sale.”

Members of the community can show their support by donating quilts or materials; participating in the Remnant Warehouse sewing days; starting their own quilting group; or purchasing the quilts at the exhibition.

For more information, join the Quilts that Care Facebook page or email


31 July 2012

Contact: Danielle Roddick, Senior Media Officer