Posted by: christinelaennec | July 21, 2011

Knitting and Somalia

Cranford Mitts from a pattern on the p/hop website

Yes, I realise that the people of Somalia do not need woollen mitts just now. I will get a good deal of wear from them this autumn, I’m sure – mostly around the house! The connection is that I knit them from a pattern on the p/hop website. This is a creative fundraiser for Médecins sans Frontières, who do amazing work in places where people are desperate for medical help.  P/hop stands for “pennies per hour of pleasure”:  the idea is that you download the pattern for free, but give what you feel the pleasure of knitting it has been worth to you (or will be worth to you).  I downloaded this pattern last year, bought the wool for it at Knit Camp Day in Stirling in August, and have just knit them.  When I went to the p/hop website, I decided to give money to a specific appeal for Somalia.

So when I wear them, I will be thinking of people far away, who do not have the luxury of nonstop rain as I do; or the certainty that they can feed their children and themselves.  I do pray that everyone’s small (and great) efforts will add up to true relief for them, and that they will know they have not been forgotten.

[Postscript:  I’ve had a request for information about wool/fibre/knitting events or places to visit near Stirling this August.  Can any knitterly readers help? Thanks!]



  1. What a brilliant idea. Great looking mittens too. I knit in fits and starts….. dishcloths at present! I have bookmarked p-hop in my favourites and quite fancy tackling the cricket tea cosy!

  2. I have made things from their patterns before, such a worthy cause and one of my dearest knitterly friends used to work for them as a nurse in crisis zones. I can’t bear to see all those poor people on the TV each night…why are we still letting this happen????
    Not sure about knitting events etc. near Stirling, I don’t think there are any this year.

  3. Old Maiden Aunt studios and New Lanark are within reach of Stirling if the person has transport?
    Great mittens!

  4. I love your mittens, and it’s a wonderful idea too…Hope you won’t have to use them for a long time ….

  5. what a lovely idea! thanks for reminding us of those less fortunate. we sometimes take rain for granted. it’s really a blessing.

  6. Such pretty mittey’s and for such a worthy cause! You are a Dear. xx

  7. Love the mitts and love even more what they represent…hope and charity. I was unaware of p/hop so thank you for sharing. I’m heading over there to check it all out. Have a great weekend.

  8. Thanks for the heads up about this site. I love the way your mitts turned out. I have friends from Somalia, (Minneapolis has more Somalis than Mogadishu now !) and I love knitting so this seems like a natural.

  9. Dear All,
    Thanks for all your kind comments, and I’m glad if p/hop is of interest to some. Sigrid, I didn’t know that Minneapolis had either a Mogadishu or a Somalian community – not exactly Lake Wobegon then! Knitsister, I’m the same, I find it nearly unbearable to watch t.v. coverage of this enormous suffering and it makes me so angry that “we” don’t do more. However, it’s good to be able to make even a small contribution, and knit at the same time. Roobeedoo, thanks for your suggestions, I’ve passed them on.

    Have a good week, everyone!

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