‘Warming the Gorge’ returns, Christmas Project gears up

PORT of Cascade Locks turned on its bridge holiday display on Nov. 25.

Submitted photo
PORT of Cascade Locks turned on its bridge holiday display on Nov. 25.

It’s that time of year again — time to make things for others as the holidays grow near. Some are not lucky enough to have anyone to make warm things for them, which is why Yvonne Ellsworth and Sarah Keller started the Warming the Gorge campaign in 2015. Warm, handknit or crocheted items are being collected at Knot Another Hat for local warming shelters in Hood River and The Dalles, as well as for The Next Door, Helping Hands Against Violence, and the people of Cascade Locks.


HOOD RIVER Warming Shelter provides a warm place and meals for those in need, each night through mid-March, at Riverside Community Church. Volunteers Diane Romans, left, and Sandy Spellecy prepare the shelter for opening. For details about volunteering and donating items, email info@hoodrivercares.org. Warm goods are needed, including gloves and sleeping bags.

Items, grouped by need, preferably in washable wool or another washable fiber, are as follows:

•Hood River Warming Shelter: Warm items for men.

•The Dalles Warming Place: Hats and mittens for men and women.

•The Next Door: Handknit baby items and any sized child items.

•Helping Hands Women's Shelter: Prayer shawls. You don’t necessarily need to pray. Essentially a prayer shawl is a scarf or shawl where thoughts of hope and healing are said or thought while making the item. Those thoughts are embedded in the garment and will help those who wear it through a tough time.

•City of Cascade Locks: Warm items for men, women, and children to include in FISH food baskets.

Bring items to Knot Another Hat any time until Dec. 17.

Registration for the 2017 Hood River County Christmas Project started Nov. 9 and continues for families in need through Dec. 9.

The program provides assistance with food and children’s gifts, during the Christmas holiday and can benefit many Hood River County families that are currently receiving State of Oregon Supplemental Nutrition Assistance, or who have a Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) card, or who are enrolled in the Oregon Health Plan (OHP card).

Families wishing to apply will need to bring proof of eligibility and residency. Last year, approximately 480 families (over 1,900 men, women, and children) registered and received community support.

Christmas Project applications will be taken at the following locations and dates:

Hood River — Oregon Department of Human Services, 1610 Ninth Court on the Heights off of Pacific Avenue, on:

• Fridays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Dec. 1, and 8.

• Saturdays 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Dec. 2 and 9.

Odell — Odell Food Bank, 3440 Odell Highway from 3:30-6 p.m. on Nov. 30.

Applicants, including Parkdale and Cascade Locks residents, can sign up at whichever location is most convenient for them.

Help Notes

To help Christmas Project by volunteering or sponsoring a family in need, visit www.hoodrivercountychristmasproject.com.

Gorge Windermere offices are collecting new or gently used coats and blankets for local charities and shelters.

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