How do I equip this high school knitting circle?
October 5, 2012 11:55 AM Subscribe
I need to acquire supplies for a knitting circle for high school kids in Harlem. My problem is that the budget is $60.
The knitting group is a quasi-mandatory after school class for at-risk kids, mainly girls. A lot of them have few female role models and most of them have gotten in trouble with petty crimes (shoplifting especially, as they're all obsessed with fashion/clothes and try their best to scoot around the school uniform codes). As part of my social work program, I'm trying to foster stronger peer friendships, encourage the girls to make their own stuff as opposed to stealing it, keep everyone busy doing wholesome stuff, and teach them anger-management skills.
Each after-school activity gets a relatively equal budget, and the knitting circle was allotted $60. This was enough to buy cheap plastic needles and acrylic yarn for the 15 students (12 girls, 2 openly gay boys, and 1 African Muslim boy who "really wants a blue scarf"), plus some yarn I already had on hand. The kids actually seemed kinda pumped for the first session but were immediately disappointed upon seeing the quality of the supplies.
Normally I'd splurge on these items myself, but I'm living off student loans at the moment and not in a position to buy a ton of cotton yarn and bamboo needles. I considered approaching some knitting stores in my Brooklyn neighborhood, but they're *extremely* high-end, hoity-toity places, and I'm not even sure what I would ask them. It seems unlikely that they would have extra supplies on hand that they wouldn't just sell paying customers.
The school social worker is too busy to really focus on a minor after-school class, so I figured I'd poll you guys. Perhaps I can merge our group with a bigger knitting/crafts program? Are there, uh, knitting grants? What do social workers and teachers do under these circumstances when the school budget can't accomodate the activities?