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For 25 years women from three Denver-area Christian Reformed churches have stitched together clothing for people who need it and fun for themselves.

Calling themselves the Sew & Sews, they meet every other week to create layettes, quilts, pajamas, hats, and play clothes, using sergers, sewing machines, and handwork.

 Margaret Zigterman, one of the group’s current eight members, said donations keep the women supplied with material. “Sometimes a bag of material just shows up. Other times, people who no longer sew give us what they have,” she said.

The group’s handiwork has ended up in Mexico, Africa, and Ecuador, as well as at nearby homeless shelters in Denver. But most of the clothing goes to orphanages in Eastern Europe via Bethany Christian Services in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Since the group has no budget, the women fill donated suitcases and send them along with someone traveling to Grand Rapids who will agree to deliver them to Bethany, explains member Kay Alsum.

The women say they have a lot of fun, but it’s also rewarding to get notes like the one from Bethany thanking them and letting them know that their efforts will keep a lot of children warm in Russia, Romania, and Albania.

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