Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Prisoners knit for the SPCA's homeless cats and puppies


09 September 2015

Prisoners knit for the SPCA's homeless cats and puppies



Prisoners at Rolleston Prison have been showing their softer side by knitting blankets for abandoned and homeless animals rescued by the SPCA.

The prison group meets weekly to knit with a volunteer art tutor. They also have the opportunity to knit in the afternoons and evenings when they have free time. The knitting programme as part of the prison’s wider art programme and is a constructive activity, complementing other education, training and group therapy that prisoners attend.

So far the men have completed ten blankets, and there are more on the way.

“Art is an important constructive activity in prisons as it helps prisoners strengthen their communication skills and learn to express themselves in different ways,” says Prison Director, Mike Howson. “Knitting is a great therapeutic activity for the men. It requires patience and is quite a social activity.

“Over the past three months the number of dog and puppy welfare cases has increased by 50% compared with the same period in 2014,” says Barry Helem, Chief Executive Officer for SPCA Canterbury. “With such a large number of animals requiring care over the cold winter months it is vital that we have enough supplies of bedding to help keep them warm and free from illness.”

The Canterbury SPCA receives no government funding, and with costs of over $2 million per annum, they rely heavily upon the generosity of the community to maintain their service.

“We simply cannot afford to purchase all the bedding we require and are grateful to Rolleston Prison for their efforts,” says Barry. “As the need for our service continues to increase, this valuable support really will help us to ‘save lives’ over the winter months.”

Several men attending the art and craft group are competent knitters. These men are supported to teach other participants who are interested in learning to knit. Collectively the men knit a variety of peggy squares and sew them together into blankets. The wool is supplied by donations.

Tom*, one of the knitting group, is enjoying doing something meaningful for others in need.

“I find knitting for those in need very rewarding. Knitting quilts for sick little cats and dogs gives me a joy of giving back to society.”

Several Rolleston Prison staff members knit and can find themselves giving extra tutoring or lending a hand with fixing any errors.

“The men are really pleased that the items they make are going to animals in need and that the blankets they knit will go with the dogs to their new homes. You could say that each stitch is part of a much bigger picture,” says Rolleston Principal Corrections Officer Karl Bennett.

“I think most people, including the men involved, start by thinking that knitting isn’t something that men do, particularly not male prisoners.”

“When they have given it a go they have found it is more difficult to master than they thought. They have generally found it a very relaxing and rewarding pastime which they are keen to continue with.”

“I’m sure the dogs and cats really appreciate it too.”


ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On Why Herd Immunity Isn’t A Valid Option, And What’s With Our Reluctance To Wear Masks?

Herd immunity has recently bounced back into the headlines as a tool for managing Covid-19, and as a supposed alternative to lockdowns. In the US, a group of scientists was recently brought together in the town of Great Barrington, Massachusetts by a think tank funded by the Koch brothers. The assembled scientists signed the so called Barrington Declaration, which promotes herd immunity as a rational means of re-opening US public schools and the economy at large... More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On National Being Shafted By Its Own Creation

As it licks its wounds, let’s hope the National Party can still find time to look back with some pride at what it has achieved in Epsom. The Act Party’s nationwide success on Saturday night has been a tribute to National’s foresight, and to its ... More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: 'Fruitful Discussions ... Further Discussions To Have'

The Green Party says there is a negotiation going on with the Labour Party, but there are more discussions to be had. More>>

ALSO:


Border: No Changes To Border Exemptions After Fishing Crew Test Covid-19 Positive

The cases were detected after routine day three testing but the immigration minister and air commodore agree there's no need to change border exemptions. More>>

PSA: Labour-Led Government Has Mandate For Transformation, Equality And Transparency

The Public Service Association welcomes the progressive electoral landslide New Zealand voters delivered on Saturday, and the union says its members look forward to implementing policies that reduce poverty and inequality, support affordable housing ... More>>

ALSO:


Stats NZ: New Report Shows Significant Changes To New Zealand’s Climate

Climate change is already happening in New Zealand and could have a profound impact on future generations of New Zealanders, a new report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ says. Our atmosphere and climate 2020 , released today, includes analysis ... More>>

ALSO:

Judith Collins: Obese People Must Take Responsibility For 'personal Choices'

National Party leader Judith Collins has described obesity as a weakness and says people should not 'blame systems for personal choices'. More>>

Māori Party: Poll Reveals Tamihere On Cusp Of Historic Māori Movement Election Victory

John Tamihere’s election campaign is on the rise and on track to return the Māori Party to parliament, a new Māori TV poll has revealed. The poll released on 11 October during the seventh and final Māori TV Maori Electoral campaign coverage has Tamihere ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Four-Year Terms Of Parliament, And On How The US Courts Are Dismantling Democracy

Last week, the issue of four-year parliamentary terms surfaced again. Infuriatingly, it is being discussed purely in terms of its convenience for political parties. They’d get so much more time to enact their policies, free of scrutiny or sanction by voters ... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels