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By Bonny Burrows

A small group of passionate knitters have created 180 woollen toys for children in need this Christmas.
Since August the Beaconsfield Community Knitting Circle has been busy knitting and crocheting teddy bears, stuffed animals and cuddly critters.
On Monday 4 December, just in time for Christmas, the items were handed over to Pakenham crisis centre 4Cs for distribution to children across the region.
The charity’s general manager Cheryl Daly said that with 1000 children in difficult situations signed up to receive Christmas hampers from the charity this year, the toys would be put to good use.
“Not only do these toys impact the children but also the parents. They feel so humble seeing what the children get,” Ms Daly said.
“The love that goes into the toys is very much appreciated and they really do have an incredible impact on the children.”
For the knitting group, the toy drive was an opportunity to not only unleash their creativity, but also give back.
“It’s great to do our hobby but also bring some job to people less fortunate than ourselves,” group spokesperson Jan Smith said.
The project was just one of many the Beaconsfield Community Knitting Circle has done this year.
In winter, the women knitted 88 jumpers, 50 large blankets and numerous other clothing and bedding items for in need residents.
In total, they have donated 710 handmade items to those less fortunate during the past year.
Ms Smith said the group could not have achieved what they had if not for the support of the community, including a $500 grant from the Cardinia Park Hotel and donations of wool.
Donations of wool can be made to the Beaconsfield Community Centre during opening hours.
The Beaconsfield Community Knitting Circle meets Mondays from 1pm to 3pm at the Beaconsfield Community Centre.
All are welcome.

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